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Know Your Germ Geography

Know Your Germ Geography

Updated Tue December 16, 2014

Know Your Germ Geography

It’s cold and flu season, but do you know the clues to what’s bugging you? Our HealthSmart website gives the info on infection – it’s packed full of videos, infographics and posters designed to educate businesses and employees about fighting germs.

A lot is at stake – the cost of lost productivity in the United States due to the common cold is near $25 billion. Businesses tell us they want creative, educational resources to help their employees avoid infection. So, we designed our HealthSmart website with great tips like proper hand washing and pointers on everyday germ hotspots, from schools to hospitals and office buildings to restaurants.  

Here’s a quick stat on why this is important – only one-third (39%) of U.S. adults report always washing their hands after coughing or sneezing. For the best defense, this infographic shows how washing works when you do it right, but here’s the gist:

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water.
  2. Add soap and create a rich lather.
  3. Rub your hands together for 20 seconds.
  4. Rinse your hands well under running water.
  5. Dry your hands with a clean paper towel
  6. Use the paper towel to turn off the faucet.

Interesting fact: Did you know using paper towels to dry hands reduces bacteria on finger pads by 76 percent and on palms up to 77 percent?*

*Source: A comparative study of different hand drying methods. University of Westminster, Feb. 2009

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