Seeing a Hand Sanitizer Shortage, UF Chemistry Has a Solution (UF CLAS)

Seeing a Hand Sanitizer Shortage, UF Chemistry Has a Solution

The UF Department of Chemistry has found a creative way to use its expertise to help those on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis. With courses currently taking place online, the department has begun using teaching labs — no longer buzzing with students taking part in hands-on learning — to produce hundreds of liters of much-needed hand sanitizer for UF Health.

The idea originated in mid-March when teaching lab specialist Candace Biggerstaff downloaded a World Health Organization formulation for hand sanitizer and realized the General Chemistry teaching lab had all of the ingredients sitting around unused while students learned from home.

“She made a batch, and the idea just took off from there,” said Lisa McElwee-White, the Colonel Allen R. and Margaret G. Crow professor of chemistry and chair of the department.

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