Do hand sanitizers replace handwashing?

Posted on February 2, 2011. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Handwashing is still the first and most important step for cleaning hands, especially if they are visibly soiled.

Handwashing with soap and water pulls the dirt and germs free from the skin, and washes them away.
Hand sanitizers are to be used as a supplement to regular, effective handwashing, when water is not readily available, and when hands are not visibly soiled. Applying alcohol-based sanitizers kills germs, but only when there is no visible dirt.

Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are hand disinfectants that are available as rubs, gels or rinses, and that contain more than 60 per cent alcohol.

These products are widely used in health care settings after washing hands, or in situations when water is not available, to get rid of a range of germs that cause illness.

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