Skin health and hygiene specialist, GOJO Industries-Europe Ltd, has launched a ‘Hand Sanitiser Integrity’ campaign to help businesses sustain safe and effective hand hygiene practice.
When hand sanitiser demand outpaced supply during the pandemic, many turned to dispensers and bottles that could be refilled from large sanitiser containers. According to a recent study1, 70 per cent of businesses sometimes refill hand sanitiser system cartridges, and 60 per cent of these plan to continue those practices when supply chains return to normal, post-Covid.
However, they may not be the safest or most effective solution – and can actually pose a risk to public health. These ‘open refill’ dispensers are typically serviced by pouring product into them and are usually ‘topped-off’ from gallons or drums of sanitiser that are not equipped with pumps for individual, portion controlled product usage.
Problems associated with this system include branded hand sanitiser products being refilled with other formulas, products mixing into unknown chemical combinations, inadvertent contamination or degradation, and product tampering. All of which can mean an uncompliant and potentially harmful end product.
Furthermore, mixing hand sanitisers can result in a poor user experience, producing a watery or sticky product, and can also cause skin irritation2, which can all contribute towards lower levels of compliance. The wrong product could also jam the pump, rendering the dispenser unusable.
To ensure hand sanitiser safety measures up, the integrity campaign recommends buyers should:
- Opt for products that meet key standards, including EN 14476 and EN 12791
- Ensure the product is dermatologically tested
- Check that refills are sealed to prevent contamination.
Chris Wakefield, Managing Director UK & Ireland, GOJO Industries-Europe Ltd commented: “We understand that, during the pandemic, businesses sought other solutions in an effort to protect people, and bulk style sanitiser systems plugged that need. However, the widespread use of these, together with a surge of unsafe products in the market, means there is currently a greater risk to human health and safety.
“Thanks to the carefully selected ingredients in PURELL products and its SANITARY SEALED refills, businesses can have confidence that they are offering hand sanitiser that is effective and uncontaminated.”
1 Study of Hand Sanitiser Refilling Behaviors, GOJO 2020