It’s a report most of us would want to wash our hands of. But the Global Hygiene Council is not selling any soap.
A study conducted this year by the independent body of global experts in the field of microbiology, virology, immunology, and public health claims three out of every five Indian parents — almost 59 per cent — admit their children do not wash their hands between meals.
The study, which states that only 42 per cent Indians agreed washing hands was an effective way to prevent the spread of flu, has thrown vital light on the poor level of self-hygienic practices among Indians.
Twenty nine per cent of the surveyed people in the country did not wash their hands properly after coughing or sneezing. Seventy per cent, who did, did not wash it even for 20 seconds.
Worried by the increasing spread of virus and bacterial infections, the council has recommended healthy ways to combat the spread of infections.
"Good hand hygiene is the first line of defence against the spread of many illnesses," said Dr Narendra Saini, India representative, Global Hygiene Council.
"We at Global Hygiene Council are working towards providing the public with the knowledge and tools to enable them to protect themselves and their families from infection and illness by practicing proper hand hygiene."
The experts from the Global Hygiene Council have recommended steps as simple as washing hands frequently with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds, coughing and sneezing into one's elbows and washing hands after contact with an ill person.
"These are the most simple and most effective tools against many infections," said Saini.
The council emphasised that these practices are adaptable by every individual and are exercisable both inside and when outside the home.