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UWE Bristol scientists pause research to help slow COVID-19 spread

Credit: the University of the West of England

Scientists at the University of the West of England have paused their research, to produce thousands of litres of disinfectant and help slow the spread of COVID-19.

So far, the product has been used by the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust, local GP surgeries and police stations - generally in highly-populated areas such as door pads and desks.

Alternatively, it can be utilised as a hand sanitiser.

A team of eight members of UWE Bristol staff - including PhD students and post-doctoral researchers - are working alongside the University’s estates department on the project at their Frenchay campus.

The group are also attempting to increase the production of disinfectant generators - potentially capable of producing 1,000L a day.

These could be installed where the specialised soap is needed most - on frontline services such as hospitals, ambulance stations, care homes and police stations.

As well as being used as a surface disinfectant, the product could play a leading role in tackling the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) for medical staff across the UK.

It can be used to spray down decontaminated PPE - so the kit can be used again safely - as well as to disinfect the inside of ambulances.

Credit: UWE Bristol
Credit: the University of the West of England

Darren Reynolds, Professor of Health and Environment, said: “We’re happy to be contributing our expertise and facilities to helping frontline staff who are doing a wonderful job in extremely challenging circumstances.

“The NHS would normally receive disinfectant from cleaning suppliers but as demand has increased, the supply chain is struggling to keep up.

"If there are any frontline services ... having difficulty with supplies of disinfectant or hand sanitiser, get in touch with us and we’ll endeavour to provide and deliver it.

"We are here to help.”

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