Which Soap Is Best for Preventing Outbreaks?

STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Research suggests that were people to more frequently wash their hands during travel, the risk of pandemic infection could be reduced by 24% to 69%
  • Increasing the hand-washing rate at just 10 key airports with the highest infection spread rate could reduce the risk of a pandemic by as much as 37%
  • Frequently washing your hands during influenza season and other pandemic outbreaks is a crucial safety measure. Habituated face-touching is a vector for self-inoculation and transmission of infectious diseases, and most people touch their face an average of 23 times per hour
  • It’s important to wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds, using soap and water. Only when soap and water are unavailable is alcohol-based hand sanitizer recommended, as soap eliminates viruses more effectively
  • Soap very effectively destroys most viruses, including COVID-19. Soap dissolves the fatty membrane that holds the virus together. As the virus falls apart, it is rendered harmless and can easily be washed off under running water

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