While last year’s flu cases were minimized due to people complying with COVID-19 pandemic restrictions – staying home, social distancing, wearing masks, and washing hands properly – this year, reduced COVID-19 restrictions will increase the opportunity for germs to spread, and experts say flu cases are already on the rise.

As we approach two years within the coronavirus pandemic, with flu season here, and with colder weather making it more difficult to be outside, leading global hygiene and health company Essity is recognizing National Handwashing Awareness Week (Dec. 5-11)by emphasizing that it’s still vitally important to remember to wash your hands and that proper technique is critical.

In fact, a recent survey conducted on Essity’s behalf by the Harris Poll revealed that 84% of Americans intend to continue the enhanced hygiene practices they adopted during the pandemic such as more frequent hand washing and use of hand sanitizer, even as more Americans become vaccinated against COVID-19. More survey results can be found here.

This Handwashing Awareness Week, Essity is shining a light on hand hygiene behaviors, motivating the public to protect their own health and that of their loved ones. Essity, which makes the Tork® brand of professional hygiene products such as paper towels, napkins, tissues, toilet paper, hand sanitizer and soap used in public spaces, developed relevant and useful resources to help drive home the critical hand hygiene message for adults, children and businesses:

  • For all: The five steps of proper handwashing video – a crash course – where Essity’s Carolyn Berland, senior scientist and hand hygiene specialist, demonstrates the best way to wash your hands.
  • For teachers: Handwashing Works hand hygiene education program – Essity’s free, downloadable, comprehensive resource for pre-k through second grade teachers to use when delivering handwashing education to their students, whether in person or remote. For older students, ages 6-10-years old, Essity’s Tork® brand created Max’s Handwashing School to teach children the importance of a good handwashing routine.
  • For parentsElla’s Handwashing Adventure App – A free, downloadable interactive app from Essity’s Tork® brand designed to help young children learn good hygiene habits at an early age—and is also a great resource for teachers.
  • For businessesTork® Clean Care – Comprehensive program for industries including healthcare, education, manufacturing, offices and food service that offers expert recommendations and useful tools to help improve hand hygiene and surface cleaning at your facilities and create a safer working environment for your employees.
  • For healthcare: Tork® Hand Hygiene Training (Virtual Reality) ꟷ Designed especially for infection prevention in healthcare facilities, this innovative hand hygiene solution is based on the WHO’s 5 moments for Hand Hygiene.

According to Amy Bellcourt, Vice President, Communications for Essity in North America, “Handwashing Awareness Week is an important reminder that practicing safe hand hygiene—including properly washing hands with soap and drying thoroughly with a paper towel—still remains one of the best ways to prevent the spread of infection and should be given greater priority by all, especially as we enter flu season and the coldest part of the year.” 

What Are the 5 Steps of Proper Handwashing?

  1. Wet your hands
  2. Apply soap
  3. Scrub your hands for 20 seconds (cleaning every part of your hands and wrists)
  4. Rinse thoroughly
  5. Dry thoroughly with a clean paper towel

About Tork

The Tork brand offers professional hygiene products and services to customers worldwide ranging from restaurants and healthcare facilities to offices, schools and industries. Our products include dispensers, paper towels, toilet tissue, soap, napkins, wipers, but also software solutions for data-driven cleaning. Through expertise in hygiene, functional design and sustainability, Tork has become a market leader that supports customers to think ahead so they’re always ready for business. Tork is a global brand of Essity, and a committed partner to customers in over 110 countries. To keep up with the latest Tork news and innovations, please visit www.torkusa.com