MSU researchers, led by CAS Associate Dean of Research Maria Lapinski, have concluded in a recent study that some men may be more likely to wash their hands after using the bathroom if they see messages that remind them to do so.
The researchers surveyed 252 college-aged men exiting campus bathrooms after signs were posted that read, 4 out of 5 males wash their hands, with pictures of students wearing MSU's logo and a guide to effective hand-washing. Upon exiting the bathroom, the men were asked to fill out a questionnaire on the messaging they saw and whether they followed the signs' prompts.
"It [the research] is important from a public health standpoint, because quality hand-washing can prevent transmission of many diseases, and we have good evidence that people typically don't do it as often or as well as they should," said Lapinski.
The study concluded that 86 percent of men who saw the signs reported washing their hands, compared to 75 percent of men that reported washing their hands in an initial survey before the signs were posted.