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Schools being asked to check hand sanitiser supplier following recall of brand due to possible 'health concerns'

A product recall was issued tonight by the Department of Agriculture on ViraPro hand sanitiser.

Image: Shutterstock/Maridav

Updated Oct 23rd 2020, 7:31 AM

THE DEPARTMENT OF Education is asking all schools to check whether they are using a hand sanitiser which has tonight been recalled. 

A product recall was issued tonight by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine on ViraPro hand sanitiser (PCS100409), citing “possible public health concerns”. 

The supplier of this product was one of 11 suppliers on the multi supplier framework for PPE for education settings. 

The Department of Education is now informing all schools of the need to check whether they have used this supplier and have stocks of this product. 

Schools are being asked to follow the advice of the Department of Agriculture to cease using it. 

“On Friday, 23 October, schools that are impacted by this can make local arrangements to purchase stocks of hand sanitisers and can maximise the use of hand washing to support necessary hand hygiene,” the Department of Education said. 

“If a school that is impacted judges it necessary to do so, they can choose to close for the day or close early on Friday, 23 October,” it said. 

If a school has difficulty sourcing replacement hand sanitiser, they are being asked to contact the Department on the Covid-19 helpline and email address supplied to schools. 

Additional funding will be provided to schools to enable them to purchase the necessary supplies from an alternative supplier.

In a statement, the Department of Agriculture said: “Tests by the Department show that some of the sanitiser on sale does not comply with regulations governing the content and efficacy of such products.

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“Some of the product contains methanol rather than ethanol. Prolonged use of such sanitiser may cause dermatitis, eye irritation, upper respiratory system irritation and headaches. This product may not remain on the market or be made available for use.

“The company involved has been instructed by the Department to initiate an immediate recall of all product. Members of the public are advised to stop using this sanitiser with immediate effect.  A department investigation into this matter is ongoing.”

With reporting from Sean Murray

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