COVID-19 is a recently discovered respiratory virus. COVID-19 is primarily transmitted from one person to another. When an infected individual coughs or sneezes, it spreads through respiratory droplets. These droplets have the ability to fall on people in the vicinity (within 6 feet). COVID-19 may also be contracted by touching a contaminated surface or substance and then touching one’s own mouth, nose, or eyes.
COVID-19 can be prevented by cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces, particularly those that are regularly touched (such as doorknobs, handles, tabletops, and so on)
Areas of Priority When Disinfecting
Disinfection activities are critical in non-healthcare settings, such as the home, workplace, colleges, fitness centers, publicly available facilities, religion community centers, malls, transportation and commercial settings, or restaurants. Doing so will minimize the risk of COVID-19 virus infection.
Window and door handles, kitchen and food preparation areas, kitchen cabinets, toilet surfaces, sinks and taps, mobile personal devices, home computer keyboards, and work surfaces should all be disinfected as a priority in these non-health care environments.
Surface Disinfectants Against COVID-19
Sodium hypochlorite (bleach / chlorine) at a suggested concentration of 0.1 percent or 1,000ppm can be used in non-healthcare environments. Surface disinfection can also be done with 70-90 percent alcohol. To remove dirt, clean the surfaces with water and soap or a detergent first, then disinfect. Cleaning must always begin with the least soiled (cleanest) area and work its way up to the most soiled (dirtiest) area to avoid spreading the dirt to less soiled areas.
Both sanitizing formulas should be kept in clear containers in a well-ventilated, protected area away from direct sunlight. Ideally such solutions should be prepared fresh every day. For COVID-19, it is not recommended to spray disinfectants on surfaces on a regular basis in indoor spaces. If disinfectants are to be used, they should be applied with a disinfectant-soaked cloth or wipe.
Protective Measures When Using Disinfectants
When using disinfectants, it’s important to take the following precautions:
- To avoid damaging surfaces and to avoid or reduce adverse effects on household members, the disinfectant and its concentration should be carefully chosen .
- Mixing disinfectants, such as bleach and ammonia, can irritate the respiratory system and release potentially lethal gases.
- During the application of the substance, keep children, pets, and other people away until it is dry and odourless.
- To ventilate, open windows and use fans. If odours become too heavy, get away from them. Often prepare disinfectant solutions in well-ventilated environments.
- Upon using any disinfectant, including surface wipes, wash your hands.
- When not in use, hold lids tightly closed. When containers are open, spills and injuries are more likely to occur.
- Disinfectant wipes should not be used by infants. Cleansing fluids and disinfectants should be kept out of sight of children and pets.
- If you used disposable things like gloves or masks when washing, throw them away. It’s not a good idea to wash and recycle.
- Disinfectant wipes should not be used to clean hands or as baby wipes.
- Rubber gloves, waterproof aprons, and closed shoes are the minimum recommended personal protective equipment when disinfecting in non-health care environments. Protective eyewear and medical masks may also be required.
Disinfecting Outdoor Spaces
Large-scale spraying or fumigation for the COVID-19 virus or other pathogens in outdoor spaces, such as streets or open market places, is not recommended. COVID-19 does not infect people in the streets or on the sidewalks. Spraying disinfectants, even outside, can be harmful to people’s health and cause discomfort or damage to their eyes, lungs, and skin.
Since the presence of soil or trash, for example, inactivates the disinfectant, and manual washing to manually remove all matter is not possible, this procedure would be useless. On porous surfaces like sidewalks and unpopulated walking paths, this is even less efficient. Chemical spraying is unlikely to completely cover surfaces in the absence of soil or garbage, allowing the necessary contact time to inactivate pathogens.
Recommended Practices Once Back Home from Outdoors
Before touching objects, products, pets, or people at home, conduct thorough hand hygiene first by washing hands with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand gel.
Outside, keep a physical distance of at least one meter from other people; sustain hygiene practices by washing hands often with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand rub; When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or a tissue; stop rubbing your eyes, nose, or mouth; and stay away from crowded areas.
Cleaning and Disinfecting Food Items
Viruses that cause respiratory illnesses have never been shown to be transferred by food or food packaging. Coronaviruses cannot replicate in food; instead, they need an animal or human host to reproduce.
COVID-19 is thought to be transmitted from person to person by respiratory droplets. There is currently no proof that the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted by food.
It is important to wash your hands with soap and water for at least 40-60 seconds before cooking or consuming food. Food protection and handling guidelines should be followed on a regular basis.
Safety Measures to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19
The easiest way to avoid infection is to avoid being exposed to it. Standard precautions are often recommended to reduce the spread of respiratory viruses. Here are some of the things you can do to help prevent COVID-19 from spreading:
- Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water.
- If you can’t wash your hands with soap and water, use alcohol-based hand rubs and gels.
- Avoid rubbing your eyes, nose, and mouth with your hands that haven’t been washed.
- Avoid direct contact with sick people and remain at home if you’re sick.
- Use your arm/elbow, not your hand, to cover your cough or sneeze.
- Constantly touched items and surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected.