Regular cleaning will kill the coronavirus on surfaces – study

17th of March 2020
Regular cleaning will kill the coronavirus on surfaces – study

New research from Singapore has revealed that twice-a-day surface cleaning and daily floor-cleaning with a regular disinfectant may be effective against the coronavirus.

Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the research considered the extent to which environmental contamination impacted on the disease's transmission.

Researchers at Singapore's National Centre for Infectious Diseases and DSO National Laboratories collected samples from the rooms of three patients held in isolation between late January and early February. One of the rooms was tested before cleaning while the other two were swabbed after disinfection had taken place.

In the room tested before cleaning it emerged that 13 out of 15 sites including a chair, bed rail, a glass window, the floor and light switches were contaminated with the coronavirus.

Three of five toilet sites tested were also contaminated including the sink, door handle and toilet bowl suggesting that faecal matter could be a transmission route. Air samples tested negative, but swabs from air exhaust outlets were positive suggesting that virus-laden droplets may be carried by air flows and deposited on vents.

The other two patient rooms were given a routine surface clean and the floors were cleaned with a commonly-used disinfectant. No positive results were recorded afterwards.

The study concluded that patients with the coronavirus are likely to extensively contaminate their bedrooms and bathrooms, underlining the need to routinely clean all high-touch surfaces, basins and toilet bowls. However, current decontamination measures were found to be sufficient - provided such measures were adhered to strictly.



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