Consumer alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and health care hand alcohol or alcohol hand antiseptic agents, are antiseptic products used to avoid transmission of pathogens. These exist in liquid, foam, and easy-flowing gel formulations. The level of alcohol varies between 60% and 85%. The most commonly used level is 62%.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010 dmdash; The way 62 percent ethanol foam hand sanitizers are used in a practical clinical setting most likely means they do not provide any more bacterial reduction than simply washing with the same quantity of water alone, says a new study presented at the Fifth Decennial International Conference on HAIs. The study results confirm preliminary data first presented by lead author Dr. G
The data suggests we have a false sense of security with regard to the level of bacterial reduction provided when using 62 percent foam hand sanitizers, said Kampf, who is a member of the German Association for Infection Control and a lecturer at the Ernst Moritz University in Germany. Practically, it is very difficult to use these appropriately, so we may be fooling ourselves a bit with regard to hand hygiene efforts when using such products. This should be a wake up call to the infection prevention community.
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