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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

CDC To Schools: "Alcohol-Free Hand Sanitizers Are Useful"

For the better part of 2 1/2 years, this blog has pontificated, pounded tables, and even patronized federal agencies on the features/benefits of non-alcohol hand sanitizers vs. the inherent dangers of legacy, alcohol-based hand sanitizer products.

Whether or not CDC was influenced by certain letters directed to various senior execs at CDC, HHS and DOE, we're happy to report that the CDC has actually updated its position with regard to non-alcohol hand sanitizers.

However much their new verbiage is a CYA for the CDC, the fact is they are acknowledging that alcohol hand sanitizers are being eschewed by school systems throughout the country, and their recent memo at Flu.Gov includes the following statement:

"..for schools that prohibit alcohol-based hand sanitizers, non-alcohol hand sanitizer products are useful..."

It's a small step, but one that has apparently inspired tens of dozens of schools throughout the country that have been waffling on the topic and otherwise deferring to bureaucrats that have held up their hands and said  "But..but...we can't do something different, because we read that the CDC recommends alcohol.. " 

Well..that's simply a mis-interpretation of what the CDC actually says, and their latest update for K-12 schools at provides clarity on their posture with regard to hand sanitizer products that are alcohol-free.

We say: The most pragmatic approach to good hand hygiene is to wash your hands with soap and water. If you can't wash with soap and water, and you are planning on using a hand sanitizer-check the label and check the ingredients.

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