SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) ─ Scientists at the University of Rhode Island (URI) are producing hand sanitizer in an effort to meet the growing demand caused by COVID-19.
Both “Rhody Blue” and “Rhody Clear” hand sanitizers are being produced by URI’s Pharmaceutical Development Institute, which recently became certified by the Rhode Island Department of Health to make the germ-killing gel.
“Like all health care professionals, we’re deeply concerned about the virus and want to do everything we can to help slow it’s spread,” Pharmacy Dean Paul Larrat said. “We have the expertise and the labs here in the college to properly produce hand sanitizer to FDA standards, so this is one small way we can help with the monumental, ongoing response to this pandemic.”
Both hand sanitizers contain 75% isopropyl alcohol and are being produced and bottled in labs on URI’s Kingston campus.
“A demand for hand sanitizer was expressed from the university and from some of our external partners, so we put an emergency response team together to help meet the need,” Acting Director of the Pharmaceutical Development Institute Cathy Curtin-Miller said. “Staff members have selflessly volunteered to be part of the response effort to the virus.”
The “Rhody Blue” hand sanitizer is being distributed on-campus in 8-ounce bottles. The Pharmaceutical Development Institute is also providing half-gallon bottles of “Rhody Clear” hand sanitizer to the Rhode Island Department of Corrections for use in its facilities.
A URI spokesperson tells Eyewitness News the Pharmaceutical Development Institute is making as much hand sanitizer as they can with the supplies they have. At this time, the spokesperson said, the university can only commit to providing the URI community and the Department of Corrections with hand sanitizer.
“Beyond campus, the college is supplying as many first responders with ‘Rhody Blue’ as they can, especially police officers and healthcare workers,” the spokesperson said.
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