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Australia in good hands thanks to stringent sanitiser testing

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6 August 2020

Hand hygiene is crucial to fight COVID-19. But how do we know that the alcohol-based hand sanitiser we buy actually works?

The National Measurement Institute (NMI) is the first laboratory in Australia to test hand sanitiser for alcohol type and content under new pandemic guidelines from the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).

The TGA says to look for a formulation with at least 60% alcohol. If buying a product that states it’s using the World Health Organization (WHO) formula, it should have 80% ethanol or 75% isopropyl alcohol.

NMI testing is helping ensure manufacturers’ claims on hand sanitisers labels are accurate.

Recently the ABC’s 7:30 Report ran a report questioning the effectiveness of some hand sanitisers. It featured NMI’s testing.

That was after CHOICE revealed that a company was selling sanitiser labelled 70% alcohol - when NMI testing showed it was actually 23%.

The TGA issued that company with a $25,200 fine.

This pandemic pivot by NMI is an extension of its everyday role supporting quality manufacturing and community safety.

NMI’s expertise in chemical, biological and physical measurement gives consumers confidence in the quality of products and services from food to fuel and more.

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