Africa: Pharmacy Students produce hand sanitizers to fight Covid 19

Since the emergence of the coronavirus pandemic, sales of hydro-alcoholic disinfectant products have tripled and many pharmacies and shops are out of stock in many African countries.

Togo has also suffered this shortage and rise in prices. To address the shortage on the market, the University of Lomé, through a team of students in Pharmacy at the Faculty of Health Sciences (FSS) has taken the initiative to prepare and supply hospitals with hydro-alcoholic solutions. Composed of alcohol 96%, hydrogen peroxide 3%, glycerol 98% and distilled water, these solutions are manufactured according to the WHO formulation.

According to M. Elom Akpalo, president of the Pharmacy Students Association, “the initiative aims at helping the Togolese population to fight against the coronavirus pandemic and above all to contribute to reduce the price explosion on the market”.

In one week, more than 1,500 liters were sold to hospitals, pharmacies and private companies in the area with an ever-increasing demand.

Similar projects have been undertaken in other universities in Africa like the University of Liberia. The difference is that the students in the School of Pharmacy at the University of Liberia are distributing the produced hand sanitizers free-of-charge to the population. They target to reach a population of 50,000 and plus as long as resources are available.

This initiative also enables students to carry out practical exercises that are compulsory in pharmacy schools.
The coronavirus has contaminated more than 3,300 people and caused more than 90 deaths in Africa.