Contracting coronavirus through surface contact not yet proven-WHO

by Duke Magazine

The global health body, World Health Organization (WHO), has confirmed that it has not be scientifically proven that people can easily be infected by coronavirus by the mere touching of surfaces where it lingers, like doorknobs, handles or keyboards. 

This statement was highlighted in the recommendation given by the health organization on the safety guidelines that people disinfect objects. 

The guidelines reference a study that showed the virus could survive on the outside of a medical face mask for about seven days.

Furthermore, the WHO also noted that studies about the ability of the coronavirus to survive should be viewed with some skepticism, since such studies are researched in laboratories with little bearing on real-world conditions.

In the foregoing study, the virus survived on stainless steel and plastic for four days, on glass for two and on fabric and wood for one.

Another study showed the virus surviving for four hours on copper, 24 hours on cardboard and 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel.

Even though the cases of contracting the deadly virus from surfaces have not be confirmed, but the transmission can’t be underestimated with respect to other known coronaviruses. 

That’s why it’s important to disinfect surfaces of objects like sinks, toilets, electronic devices and handholds, the WHO says.

Meanwhile, the WHO has also advised against the haphazard and large-scale spraying of disinfectants, either indoors or outdoors, as the practice has been in Asian communities. 

The health body stated that streets and sidewalks are not harbors for the virus, and it is unlikely that disinfectant would linger long enough on uneven surfaces to be of any use.

The WHO also gave a stern warning against the spraying down of people with disinfectant, especially since that would not stop an infectious person from passing the disease on.

“Moreover, spraying individuals with chlorine and other toxic chemicals could result in eye and skin irritation, bronchospasm due to inhalation, and gastrointestinal effects such as nausea and vomiting,” it added.

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