Despite all the lessons of the pandemic, nearly one in five Australians admit they don’t always wash their hands after going to the bathroom.
Nearly half admit that they sometimes forget to whip their food before handling it.
The findings, the result of a nationwide online survey by the Food Safety Information Council, highlight relevant research revealing more than 4.6 million cases of foodborne illness annually across Australia.
Lydia Buchtmann, a spokeswoman for Congress, said, “Washing your hands thoroughly with running water, soap, and drying your hands thoroughly is a basic public health message that people seem to forget.”
Of the more than 1,250 adults surveyed, 18% said they don’t always flush after going to the bathroom, and 47% said they don’t before eating or cooking.
Gender was a point of difference, with 84% of female respondents saying they ensured they practiced hand hygiene every time they went to the bathroom, but only 80% of males provided the same assurance. was.
While 62% of women reported washing before touching food, only 52% of men could say the same.
Young people were less likely to clean their hands when exiting the toilet (74% under 34 and 86% over 50) or before snacks or meals (51% to 58%).
Meanwhile, the Australian National University report on the cost of foodborne illness in Australia found that there are 4.67 million cases of foodborne illness each year, resulting in approximately 48,000 hospitalizations, 38 deaths, and an economic loss of $2.1 billion. increase.
“Poor handwashing may be the main cause of these numbers,” Buchtmann warned.
She encouraged everyone to download the council’s educational package and put up posters at home, work, or school.
The Food Safety Information Council recommends washing and drying your hands before handling, preparing, and eating food. After touching raw meat, fish, eggs, or poultry. after using the restroom or attending a child’s potty or diaper change; after sneezing, coughing, touching pets, gardening.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that a focus on handwashing education can reduce the number of people who get sick from diarrhea by up to 40%.
Absence in school children due to stomach ailments could be reduced by as much as 57%, and respiratory illnesses such as the common cold could be reduced by more than 20% in the general population.
A study by international washroom maker Bradley Corporation found that Americans washed their hands 10.5 times a day in the early stages of the COVID pandemic, but that number dropped by a quarter after that.
https://www.perthnow.com.au/news/health/some-aussies-admit-still-not-handwashing-c-8623251 Some Australians admit they don’t wash their hands yet