Disinfectant products authorised as PMCs
When buying a disinfectant product, as it is often the case in these days, one should always read its label carefully. It is here that one can find the most important information about a disinfectant: not only the claims about its actions but also its ingredients, the name of the manufacturer, and its authorisation number as biocide or PMC.
In fact, only products authorised as PMC (Presidi Medici Chirurgici, Medical Surgical Aids) or Biocides are classified as disinfectants for hard surfaces and healthy skin and can claim it in their labels.
Evidence of such approval is the presence of the authorisation number on the label. This also means that a technical dossier was submitted to ensure that the product actually “works”:
- efficacy studies demonstrating its activity against bacteria, viruses, or fungi;
- stability studies, showing that the concentration of its active ingredient is stable for a specific period of time;
- a certificate on the active substance demonstrating the amount used in the product.
The label of a PMC will also include the name of the product’s manufacturer, which, if located in Italy, also requires a specific authorisation released after the assessment of technical documentation and a specific audit to the manufacturing facilities by the competent authority, while in the case of foreign manufacturing sites, this depends on the local reference regulations.
The market is in fact on the verge of being saturated by the presence of products not complying with such requirements: products for which no dossier was submitted, often because they contain quantities of active substances below the efficacy threshold, or because the studies required to prove their efficacy were not carried out.
All these products are often put on the market without the required registration and cannot be considered in any case as PMC or biocide.
A different case is the one of those products claiming ‘hygienizing’ properties for hands: this can be done if they were duly notified as cosmetics.
It is therefore essential that products are assessed and approved as PMC, biocide or cosmetics, according to the requirements provided for by the respective regulations, thus ensuring their compliance and safety.
In this complex landscape, it is not surprising that a huge amount of products were seized by the authorities, in the efforts to prevent speculations during this emergency and to ensure that consumers receive products that are suitable for disinfection.
All this applies not only to products sold for the disinfection of hands and hard surfaces, but also for more specific disinfectants such as those used to sanitise streets, public facilities, and the environment in general.