Greeks are the cleanest in Europe when it comes to hand washing habits

washing hands

washing hands

According to a 2015 global survey from WIN/Gallup International, the world’s leading association in market research and polling within Europe, the Greeks reported to be the cleanest, 85% agreeing that they wash their hands with soap and water automatically, while the Dutch the least likely (50%). 

The results are timely given the outbreak of the coronavirus, with hand-washing one of the recommended measures to deter the spread of the virus.

Greece has reported only 7 cases of the coronavirus to date, whilst Italy has more than 1,000 cases. Interestingly, the 2015 poll reports only 57% of Italians agreeing that they wash their hands with soap and water automatically.

The survey interviewed a total of 62,398 people across the world and found there are significant differences by region. Those from China and Japan were significantly less likely to automatically use soap and water (23% and 30% respectively), while those from Saudi Arabia were most likely to wash hands with soap and water with Turkey at the highest rate of 94%.

One in three people across the world don’t always wash their hands properly after going to the toilet. A global survey from WIN/Gallup International, shows that 65% of those polled across 64 countries ‘agree’ that washing their hands with soap and water is something they automatically do.

According to the findings, around the world, 440 million school days are lost every year due to water, sanitation and hygiene related diseases (WHO/UNICEF 2013). It is estimated that hand washing with soap alone could save over 650,000 lives each year (Greenland et al 2012).  Jean-Marc Leger, President of WIN/Gallup International Association, said: “It is estimated that 35% of the global population has no access to safe bathroom facilities and that an alarmingly high number of people across the world are not washing their hands with soap and water, either because of a lack of facilities or bad habits. We are proud to release this study and to contribute to raising awareness worldwide about the benefits of hand washing with soap."

*Source: WIN/Gallup International