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An investigation of hand washing facilities in various settings on the island of Ireland

Project Reference: 04-2017

Status: Ongoing

Commencement Date: May 2018

Project Duration: 24 months


This project is investigating hand hygiene behaviours and compliance (childcare services, public toilets and food businesses) across the island of Ireland (ROI/NI). It will be a mixed methods approach involving several different studies utilising both quantitative and qualitative data collection methods to achieve the following research objectives;

To review published data on strategies to improve handwashing compliance and develop novel strategies for (i) childcare services, (ii) public toilets and (iii) food businesses (e.g. canteen/café/restaurant).

To review (where available) handwashing policies/signage and facilities available for handwashing in (i) childcare services (ii) public toilets and (iii) food businesses; and to determine the microbiological status of hand driers and door handles at the beginning and end of each day in (ii) public toilets and (iii) food businesses only.

To examine handwashing practices in (i) childcare services (2-4 year olds); and to measure compliance with hand washing practices in (ii) public toilets and (iii) food businesses.

To develop and test a range of strategies for improving handwashing behaviour, over time (to allow for user fatigue), and to develop innovative tools, interventions and recommendations for handwashing primarily in public toilets.

Principal Contractor(s):

Dr Marie Vaganay, Ulster University 


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