WASHINGTON — The fifth annual Clean Hands Report Card® issued by the Soap and Detergent Association (SDA) shows that America''s grade for hand hygiene has risen from a "C-minus" in 2008 to a "B-minus," according to a press release.
According to the release, the Clean Hands Report Card is based on a series of hygiene-related questions asked of 888 Americans — 446 men and 442 women — during a telephone survey conducted in August 2009 by Echo Research.
Compared to 36 percent in last year''s report, 50 percent of respondents say they wash their hands more than 10 times per day, the release stated.
Relatively unchanged from one year ago, 39 percent of respondents claim to never or seldom wash their hands after coughing or sneezing, the release noted.
Nancy Bock, SDA vice president of education, said: "The H1N1 pandemic is real. Cold and flu season is on its way. With common sense hygiene practices, good health is literally in our hands. Now is not the time to let our guard down when it comes to cleaning our hands."
Only one-third of respondents said they changed their overall hygiene habits in response to the growing concerns about the H1N1 (swine flu) virus, the release added.
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