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Arfan Baig
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Concerns about children's hand hygiene – are they washing their hands?

By Published September 03, 2020

More than a third of parents (38%) admit it's still a battle to get their children to wash their hands after using the toilet and research shows they're forgetting to wash their hands too after coughing. 

The findings show that, despite the recent emphasis on the importance of hand-washing and sanitising, kids still don't know when to wash their hands and parents have to remind them when to do so.   

When it comes to hand hygiene education, half (50%) of UK parents are having to take this upon themselves – teaching their kids when the important times and situations are to wash or sanitise their hands, ahead of them going back to school this week.  

The study by Lifebuoy in partnership with the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) found:

  • Almost half of parents (43%) surveyed still have to remind their children to wash their hands before touching or eating food 
  • Nearly a third say kids won't remember to wash hands after coughing  
  • Over three quarters of the nation's children aren't cleaning their hands for the full 20 seconds, as per government guidelines (1) 
  • 47% of parents are concerned that their children could bring germs back home with them after a day at school, fuelling the need to make sure children are washing their hands regularly to avoid the spread of bacteria.  
  • Even though kids still need a lot of reminding, the message seems to have sunk in with adults who are paving the way with more than a third (38%) of adults claiming to wash or sanitise their hands 11 or more times a day, nearly tripling the amount of times they would wash their hands pre-pandemic.   

Alongside its partners, Lifebuoy is launching an ambitious programme to educate primary school children on the benefits of handwashing as well as distributing free hand hygiene kits to schools. These will include learning materials and tools to help teach children about hand hygiene and instil good habits. The brand will work with more than 4,000 schools and reach over a million children from September.  

Jason from CVFM Breakfast was joined by Dr Ranj Singh to discuss more. To listen back to the interview click on the following link: https://www.mixcloud.com/cvfmradio/cvfm-breakfast-with-jason-greenwood-and-dr-ranj-singh/ 

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