In the midst of many shortages, Magnolia Pharmacy owner Steven Hoffart has been able to create several orders of pharmaceutical-grade, alcohol-based hand sanitizers for first responders in Magnolia.

Magnolia Pharmacy, located on FM 1488, is a compounding pharmacy, which means it can create personalized medications based off prescriptions. However, through a Food and Drug Administration ruling, Magnolia Pharmacy was able to make and sell hand sanitizer over the counter, Hoffart said.

Hoffart is among the first in the state to deliver the free supplies to police, firefighters and other emergency responders to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, according to a March 18 release from the Professional Compounding Centers of America.

“The FDA released a document last week that said as a compounder you now have the ability to compound something for bulk use,” he said in an interview. “We could do hand sanitizer because of the overall national need [during the coronavirus outbreak].”

Hoffart said prior to being allowed to create hand sanitizer in bulk, police officers had come by the pharmacy and asked if there was any for sale.

“We just thought as soon as we get it made let's call the local police,” he said. “It’s a big plus for them because they can [use] it in the field.”

Hoffart said sanitizer has been donated to both the Magnolia Police Department and Montgomery County Precinct 5 Constable Chris Jones.

"PCCA salutes Steve and our other members who have risen to the challenge presented by the spread of the coronavirus to improve safety and health in their communities," PCCA President Jim Smith said in the release. "This is an example of pharmacists taking their skills preparing personalized medications for patients and pivoting them to contribute to solving a health care need for many."

Creating the hand sanitizer is easy, Hoffart said, but the supply of ingredients is short due to the outbreak. Hoffart said he hopes to be able to make more when ingredients become available in the next few weeks.

“It’s just really awesome as a compounder to help in a time of crisis,” he said.