The fears of a possible outbreak of Ebola in the country have caused a mad rush for hand sanitizers but researchers have warned parents against the use of the product by children.
According to the Centre for Global Safe Water at the Emory University in America, hand sanitizers contain alcohol that can endanger the lives of children.
Project Coordinator at the centre, Habib Yakubu, said parents should rather encourage hand washing with soap and water instead of hand sanitizers.
“It has been proven that hand washing with soap is the best. It’s a good thing to have hand sanitizers but due to their alcohol content, you can never tell how children will play around with it they might end up putting their hands in their mouth. Encouraging them to wash their hands with soap and water is the best”.
The current outbreak of Ebola in West Africa is known to be the largest and most complex outbreak since the virus was first discovered in 1976.
According to the latest report from the United Nations health body, at least 2,909 people have died in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone with 6,242 reported cases in total.
Nigeria and Senegal have also recorded a total of eight deaths and 21 cases of infection.
Even though Ghana has not recorded any case of the deadly Ebola virus, many people have resorted to the use of hand sanitizers in order to prevent being infected by the disease.
Mr Yakubu is however warning parents to desist from allowing their children to use hand sanitizers but ensure that their children adhere to the regular hand washing with soap and water.
He said research conducted in schools indicated that only 11 percent of nursery children had hand washing with soap and water after attending to natures call.
In primary schools, only 21 percent of the pupils had access to soap and water for washing of hands.
He advised schools to provide soap and water at various points in their schools and encourage students to practice the habit of washing their hands with soap and water.
Meanwhile, a campaign, known as the #NoChoBo [No CHOlera no eBOla] has also been launched on social media [Twitter] to get as many children as possible some free hand sanitizers to boost the hand washing with soap and water general cleanliness messages.