Wednesday 30 July 2014

European Hand Sanitizer Standards are updated

Two European Hand Disinfectant Standards have recently been updated.  They are BS EN 1499 2013 Edition, “Chemical disinfectants and antiseptics. Hygienic handwash. Test method and requirements (phase 2/step 2),” and BS EN 1500 2013 Edition, “Chemical disinfectants and antiseptics. Hygienic handrub. Test method and requirements (phase 2/step 2).”  Both are available now from Document Centre Inc., an authorized Standards Distributor.

The two standards apply to products for hygienic hand cleansing for disinfection in medical situations like hospitals, clinics and nursing homes, as well as for general use in the workplace and home.  The tests allow for the evaluation of the reduction of “transient microbial flora” (bacterial organisms) on hands when used by volunteers.

BS EN 1499:2013 covers cleansing by use of a hand wash product.  It replaces the previous BS EN 1499:1997 Edition.  However, results from tests using the previous edition are still valid.

Changes to BS EN 1499 are neutralization (in Section, the procedure in Annex A, and a complete revision of all Annexes.  The committee has worked to adapt the standard to the most recent state of the science, correcting errors and ambiguities.  The standard was also edited for better comprehension and readability.

BS EN 1500:2013 provides tests for the effectiveness of hand rubs.  Again, while the new document replaces the now obsolete BS EN 1499:1997, tests done to the old standard are still valid.

Changes to the BS EN 1500 again cover neutralization (Section and updating of the Annexes.  The number of volunteers in Section and the statistical evaluation from Section 5.8 have also been changed.  The same need to update the content to meet current “best practices” and to make for easier reading again apply.

While these standards have been developed by CEN for European adoption, they are used in many other jurisdictions (Canada, for example).  With the on-going concern regarding the spread of medically resistance infections in hospital and other medical settings, these requirements are essential in protecting the public.

BS EN Standards (the official English Language Editions of EN documents) are available from Document Center’s web store,  Or contact us by phone (650-591-7600), fax (650-591-7617) or email (  For more standards on this topic, see Document Center’s List of Standards on Disinfectants and Antiseptics.

Source: Standards Forum

Posted by Tim Sandle


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  2. International Standards Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible, as you gain expertise, would you mind updating your blog with extra information? It is extremely helpful for me.


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