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Hand washing is up in public restrooms in US

[ 2010-09-29 11:10]     字号 [] [] []  
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This is the VOA Special English Health Report.

Every few years, two groups do a study of how many Americans wash their hands after using the toilet. These groups are the American Society for Microbiology and the American Cleaning Institute, formerly the Soap and Detergent Association.

There was good news in the latest study. Researchers found that 85 percent of adults washed their hands in public restrooms last month. That was the most yet since the studies began in 1996.

Researchers visited restrooms at a baseball park in Atlanta and a science museum and aquarium in Chicago. They also visited two train stations in New York City and a large farmers market in San Francisco. In all, they observed about 6,000 adults.

The researchers found that 77 percent of men and 93 percent of women washed their hands. That was up from 66 percent of men and 88 percent of women in the last study three years ago.

The lowest rate of hand washing among men was at Turner Field, home of the Atlanta Braves baseball team. Only 65 percent of men washed their hands, compared to all but two percent of women.

Chicago and San Francisco had the most hand washers -- 89 percent of adults. Atlanta followed at 82 percent. New York had the lowest rate, at 79 percent of the adults observed at Grand Central Station and Penn Station.

The findings of the observational study conflicted with the findings of a separate telephone survey of about 1,000 people. Ninety-six percent of them said they always wash their hands after using public restrooms.

Almost nine out of ten also said they always wash after using the bathroom at home.

Hand washing can help prevent the spread of many different infections.

To clean your hands well, wet them first and rub in soap for at least 20 seconds, including between the fingers and under the nails.

Then rinse under running water. In a public restroom, if you dry your hands with a paper towel, you should also use the towel to shut off the water and open the door.

Hand washing is also important when preparing food and after changing a baby's diaper. You should also wash if you cough or sneeze into your hands.

If you use an alcohol-based product instead of soap and water, make sure it contains at least 60 percent alcohol.

And that's the VOA Special English Health Report, written by Caty Weaver. I'm Bob Doughty.

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(来源:VOA 编辑:陈丹妮)