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National Survey Finds Nearly All Adults Say They Wash Their Hands After Visiting Public Restrooms, But Most Think They Are Exception
Date:6/5/2009

Paper towels picked as preferred and fastest method for drying hands

PHILADELPHIA, June 5 /PRNewswire/ -- In an online survey conducted this spring, 94 percent of U.S. adults said they always wash their hands after visiting a restroom. However, when asked what percentage of other people they thought washed their hands each time after using a public restroom, 99 percent of U.S. adults felt that other people don't do so each time, and almost half (48 percent) felt that people wash their hands less than 50 percent of the time after using a restroom.

The commissioned survey was conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of the Tork(R) brand of SCA Tissue North America and drew 2,516 U.S. adult respondents 18 or older -- 46 percent male and 54 percent female. It was conducted Feb. 26 through March 2, 2009.

Results found that visiting a public restroom is the situation that ranks highest in terms of health and hygiene concerns for U.S. adults. Asked during which situations they would be most concerned about health and hygiene risks, adults selected:

  • Visiting a public restroom, 44 percent
  • Preparing food or meals, 26 percent
  • Contact with other adults, 9 percent

Other answers were: contact with babies/children, 7 percent; contact with animals, 3 percent; other, 2 percent; and not sure, 8 percent .

"Clearly people think public restrooms present a hygiene risk and claim they are washing their hands after using those restrooms," said Mike Kapalko, Environmental and Tork Services Manager, SCA Tissue North America. "But their observations of others in public restrooms indicate
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SOURCE SCA Tissue
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