A new national survey reveals 88% of Americans plan to be “extra cautious” about germs as they venture back out into the world – even after they are fully vaccinated.

These findings are coming out just as the Center for Disease Control (CDC) unveiled new guidelines that downplay how often people should clean and disinfect surfaces.

The research compiled by Stratus Building Solutions, a national commercial cleaning company with a local office, shows the pandemic turned a large majority of Americans into neat freaks.

The survey questioned 521 people, nearly half 35-44 years of age. And 53% were male.

Here are a few highlights of the survey:

  • Eight out of 10 respondents are concerned about COVID variants or something like COVID surfacing again sometime in the future.
  • Ninety percent surveyed say -- even when vaccinated -- they expect businesses they frequent to place a special emphasis on cleaning and sanitizing.
  • More than half say they won’t eat at a restaurant after they get vaccinated unless they’re confident about the cleaning and sanitation protocol.

And it’s not just about fears of COVID-19. The survey also found a majority of respondents want to see cleaning and sanitizing practices in place to prevent cold and flu, their habits about cleaning have changed forever, their expectations are at a whole new level. 

The survey also showed nearly 56% had been vaccinated against COVID-19, and 100% said they plan to get vaccinated.

When asked what locations they expected to be extra cautious, stores (81%), restaurants, (80%), airports/transportation hubs (77%), the workplace/office (74%), and gas stations (74%) were the top selections.

The majority said their personal cleaning habits have changed, with more through hand washing and the use of hand sanitizer in public. And most surveyed said their changes in cleaning habits will be permanent, not temporary. Those surveyed also said they expect businesses they patronize to continue to place a special emphasis on cleaning and sanitizing.

When asked about returning to the workplace after vaccination, those surveyed said they were stilled worried about cold and flu germs, they were worried about germs in the bathroom, kitchen and common areas, and they are concerned that colleagues may not get the vaccination.

For more information on the survey, go to surveys.propellerinsights.com/r/445431_60652a294f1509.25808895

— Macomb Daily Online Editor Don Gardner