Government taps MSU Marawi chemists to formulate alcohol for frontliners in Marawi, Lanao del Sur

THE REGION
By Divina M. Suson
March 30, 2020

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ILIGAN CITY ----- The provincial government of Lanao del Sur, through the office of the Sangguniang Kabataan Federation, tapped Mindanao State University in Marawi City, through the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, to formulate sanitizer for the frontliners in Marawi City and Lanao del Sur amid crisis on COVID-19.

The provincial government will fund the formulation of the sanitizer.

Provincial Board Member Jeff Adiong, SK Federated President in Lanao del Sur, said the scarcity of resources triggered his office to post announcement on social media that the provincial government is looking for local chemists to help them formulate sanitizer.

"Our post on social media was linked to the Department of Chemistry of the MSU-Marawi. We immediately had a meeting with the university president and four chemists are willing to help us," Adiong said in a phone interview.

While the provincial government was happy to learn of the development, it would also deal with the limited supply of substance they need in compounding the alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

The workers who pick-up the supplies has to pass through the strict checkpoint from the suppliers in Cagayan de Oro City and Iligan City.

"Second, we have to be in a hurry of not getting caught with the curfew hours. Supplies of raw materials are limited," Adiong said.

For the 39 municipalities and for Marawi City, the provincial government wishes to give five liters each of them for their including to the frontliners in the main checkpoints.

Amai Pakpak Medical Center, the only public hospital in Marawi that caters COVID patients, will have 20 liters for its workers.

The solution

Four registered chemists, who are staff of MSU main campus are now preparing to formulate the sanitizer after receiving the compounding guidelines from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Jomarie Seclon, one of chemists, said the laboratory was already disinfected.

But they have to wait for substance they need: glycerol, hydrogen peroxide and ethanol.

"We need distilled water for dilution and supply of it is not a problem. If all the materials are available, we can formulate 240 liters in five days," Seclon said


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