Study: People do not wash hands correctly 97 percent of time

Posted: Updated:
WASHINGTON -

A new study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture finds that people do not wash their hands well enough 97 percent of the time, with the most common mistake being not washing hands long enough.

The observational study asked almost 400 people to wash their hands in test kitchens and prepare food.

The study found that only 3 percent of participants followed all the necessary steps to properly wash their hands, and nearly 50 percent of the time, participants spread germs.

In order to keep germs from spreading, you should wet your hands, lather up with soap and rub your hands together for at least 20 seconds.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 48 million Americans are sickened with foodborne illnesses each year, resulting in roughly 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths. 

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