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In light of the public health emergency situation brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, it is critical for all household members to not only observe strict home quarantine, proper hand washing, personal hygiene practices and social distancing measures, but equally ensure proper maintenance of their households, the community, and the environment. While ready-to-use cleaners and disinfectants are commercially available for consumer use, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advises the general public to exercise caution when using these chemical-based cleaning and disinfectant products as they may pose risk when used indiscriminately, beyond their intended use, and inconsistently with label instructions.

Consumers and the general public are encouraged to consider the following safety precautions:

  1. Select appropriate cleaning and disinfectant products. Ensure use of recommended type of cleaning and disinfectant product for specific items (ie. children’s toys, electronics), or surface areas to be cleaned or disinfected.
  1. Always read the label. Product labels contain information for the safe and effective use of cleaners and disinfectants. Follow the instructions for use, dilution rate and contact time (as applicable), safety precautions, personal protective equipment (PPE) to be used, and appropriate storage and disposal of the product at all times.

Generally, pre-cleaning (with mild soap or detergent and water) should be performed first prior to disinfection for optimal efficiency.

  1. Use the product as intended. Avoid using products intended for surface disinfection as hand sanitizers for personal use. Improper usage and undue exposure to chemical-based products may lead to physical harm or injury, and serious adverse effects to one’s health.
  1. Handle and apply cleaners and disinfectants properly. Ensure use of PPE such as gloves whenever handling chemical-based cleaners and disinfectants. Maintain proper ventilation during and after application. Disinfectants intended for institutional use must be applied by trained personnel wearing appropriate and suitable PPE. In cases where the product needs dilution, observe proper handling and protection. Containers used in measuring the concentrate should be immediately rinsed. Use product judiciously and apply only in amounts as directed in the label.
  1. Avoid mixing of cleaners or disinfectants with other chemicals. This may either lead to (a) more hazardous chemical mixture, or (b) less effective product due to change or altered properties.
  1. Store and dispose cleaners and disinfectants properly. Freshly prepared cleaning and disinfecting solution is recommended to be used and consumed. Prepare only a sufficient amount to avoid storing unused mixture for future use. Otherwise, store cleaning and disinfecting solutions in properly labeled containers, and keep in storage area not easily accessible to children. Keep out of reach of children.
  1. Know the contact information of the nearest poison center in your area. In case of poisoning, the nearest poison control in the area, or the University of the Philippines – National Poison Management and Control Center (UP-NPMCC) may be contacted at (02) 8524-1078 to provide information on poisoning management and control.

The FDA reiterates the government’s call for the general public’s full cooperation to prevent further spread of Covid-19 and other communicable diseases. The overall approach in achieving this goal is to continuously observe strict home quarantine, proper hand washing, personal hygiene practices, social distancing measures, and proper selection and responsible use of products to ensure a clean and well-maintained household, community and the environment.

For questions or clarifications, you may contact the Center for Cosmetics Regulation and Research (CCRR) through hotline (02) 8857-1900 loc. 8113 /8107 or email at [email protected] or [email protected] .

Dissemination of this advisory to all concerned is hereby requested.

Attachment:-> FDA Advisory No.2020-549