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Banner Poison Center sees 140% increase in hand sanitizer incidents amid pandemic

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Posted at 10:51 PM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 01:51:28-04

PHOENIX — Banner Poison Center has announced that they have seen a 140% spike in incidents involving hand sanitizer in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Poison centers around the U.S. reported an increase in harmful exposures to household cleaning products, chemicals, and medications in 2020, as more people worked and completed school from home.

“Please be alert about the location of these products and keep them out of reach for small children,” said Maureen Roland, managing director of the Banner Poison and Drug Information Center, in a statement. “Our center saw a 140% increase in calls about hand sanitizer exposures (such as ingestion) in 2020, and nearly all were preventable.”

Medical experts say a major concern is the potential risk of certain hand sanitizers containing methanol still being in use despite being on the FDA recall list.

“Methanol ingestion can result in blindness and organ failure. Even small amounts can be fatal without immediate treatment,” said Dr. Daniel Brooks, medical director of the Banner Poison and Drug Information Center, in a statement.

To view the complete list of recalled products, click here.

Those who are believed to have been exposed to a poison, medication or chemical, are urged to contact the poison center immediately at 1-800-222-1222.