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  Social Responsibility

Published on: June 25, 2020, 3:56 p.m.
Fighting infection
  • The HydroCleanerTM machine runs on only common salt, tap water and electricity

By Sekhar Seshan. Consulting Editor, Business India

The rising demand for disinfectants and hand and surface sanitisation systems has spurred steam engineering and control instrumentation major Forbes Marshall to tie up with Swiss start-up SymbioSwiss develop a unique chemical-free disinfectant.

With most hospitals facing difficulty in getting disinfectants to fulfil their daily requirements, the new joint venture, Swiss NeWater India, is providing the ecofriendly, surface sanitisation disinfectant free of charge to them as well as to laboratories and pharmaceutical industries. It is also available for public governing bodies like municipalities, local councils, hospitals, and public communities in Pune and Mumbai.

“This present action is fully in line with the core of our company’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policy,” says the Indian company’s co-chairman Farhad Forbes. “We have always believed in contributing to community development, by working as a catalyst for social change, particularly in the local areas of our corporate operation.”

Adds Dr. Naushad Forbes, co-chairman of Forbes Marshall: “The need of the hour is for the industry to play a proactive role in combating the spread of Covid-19. This new ecofriendly sanitisation system has immense potential to reduce the spread of various pathogens. The Swiss NeWater technology comes at a very opportune time to help our health infrastructure also alleviate the current situation.”

According to Symbioswiss founder Dr. Claude Begle, the aim is to provide “an affordable and easy-to-deploy solution that could be equally applicable in the developing and developing regions of the world”.

The new technology gives the product powerful disinfecting properties due to oxides and radicals in its composition, produced by electrolysis; it will also cost only three-fourths of the chemical options available in the market. Having been tested by various pathogenic deactivation test procedures, it has proven to be effective against vaccinia virus, papovavirus, adenovirus, and poliovirus, and also appears to have the efficacy to neutralise various new strains of contagious viruses, spores and allergens.

Produced with a HydroCleanerTM machine from Swiss NeWater, the only raw material that the disinfectant requires is 99.9 per cent pure common salt, tap water and electricity. The machine can produce 200-250 litres disinfectant per shift, and the joint venture has been giving away close to 600-800 litres of disinfectant every day to support the fight against coronavirus.

This disinfectant solution, which enables a quick and easy generation of disinfecting water without the need of large industrial infrastructure, has been provided to the panchayat samiti of Khed near Pune, one of the communities to which Forbes Marshall is extending support in the current health situation.

It is being used in the isolation wards of the 10 primary healthcare centres in the Khed area, treating cases emerging from the current pandemic, and later at a larger facility that is being set up. The technology is also being used in a few hospitals in Pune including the Aundh Chest Hospital and other hospitals in Vishakpatnam and Mumbai.

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