Hand sanitizer shown to reduce health insurance claims by 24%


AKRON, Ohio -- A new study reports that offices equipped with alcohol-based hand sanitizers had 24.3% fewer healthcare insurance claims for preventable illnesses – such as cold, flu and respiratory illnesses.

The study, "Impact of a Comprehensive Workplace Hand Hygiene Program on Employer Health Care Insurance Claims and Costs, Absenteeism, and Employee Perceptions and Practices," was published on June 9 in The Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (JOEM)

The study evaluated a comprehensive hand hygiene program with PURELL Hand Sanitizer and PURELL Hand Sanitizing Wipes and its impact on actual medical insurance claims tied to doctors' visits.  The study found in the first year of having PURELL  products available at an employee's workspace as well as throughout the building, there was a statistically significant 24.3% lower incidence of hygiene preventable medical insurance claims compared to the control group. 

"This study builds on the decades of science demonstrating the effectiveness of a comprehensive hand hygiene program when PURELL products are used in real-world settings," said Jim Arbogast, Ph.D., the lead author of the study and vice president of hygiene sciences and public health advancements at GOJO.  "With this study, the evidence is clear that  PURELL products in a workplace can directly reduce hand hygiene preventable illnesses tied to doctors' visits by more than 24 percent."

The major findings of the study included:

  • 24.3% lower incidence of hand hygiene preventable insurance claims compared to the control group

  • 13.4% fewer sick episodes or unscheduled paid-time-off (PTO) in 2014-2015 in the intervention group compared to the previous year

  • 8 in 10 employees indicated having PURELL products throughout the office positively impacted their impression of their employer

For more information about the study, go to