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Title: Microbiological evaluation of different hand drying methods for removing bacteria from washed hands
Authors: Suen, LKP 
Lung, VYT 
Boost, M 
Au-Yeung, CH 
Siu, GKH 
Issue Date: 2019
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Source: Scientific reports, 24 Sept. 2019, v. 9, 13754, p. 1-7 How to cite?
Journal: Scientific reports 
Abstract: Proper drying of hands after washing is an integral part of hand hygiene. An experimental study on 30 subjects using multiple comparisons of six hand drying methods including 1) drying on own clothes, 2) drying with one paper towel, 3) drying with two paper towels, 4) drying with a warm air dryer while holding hands stationary for 20 s, 5) drying with a warm air dryer while hand rubbing for 20 s, and 6) drying with a jet air dryer until complete dryness was achieved. It aimed to determine the effectiveness of different hand drying methods for removing bacteria from washed hands, so as to identify the optimum method using minimum resources. Our study demonstrated that the use of jet air dryers is the best method to eliminate bacteria on hands, whereas drying hands on one's own clothes is the least effective. Drying hands in a stationary position could remove more bacteria than rubbing hands when using a warm air dryer for 20 s, which mimics people's usual hand-drying practice. No significant difference in bacteria reduction was detected between the use of one or two paper towels for hand drying; therefore, using fewer resources is recommended to maintain environmental sustainability.
EISSN: 2045-2322
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-50239-4
Rights: Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Cre-ative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not per-mitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
© The Author(s) 2019
The following publication Suen, L.K.P., Lung, V.Y.T., Boost, M.V. et al. Microbiological evaluation of different hand drying methods for removing bacteria from washed hands. Sci Rep 9, 13754 (2019), 1-7 is available at
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