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How long the coronavirus could last on a surface

As a new coronavirus spreads rapidly throughout the world, US health officials say they are evaluating “aggressively”How long you can survive on surfaces to better understand the risk of transmission.

According to what is known about similar coronaviruses, disease experts say the new outbreak of the virus, called COVID-19, It is transmitted primarily from person to person when coughing or sneezing. Contact with fecal matter of an infected person can also transmit the virus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S they say it is possible for a person to become infected by touch a surface or object that has the virus and then touch your mouth, nose or eyes.

An analysis of 22 previous similar coronavirus studies, including Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) published online this month in The Journal of Hospital Infectionconcluded that human coronaviruses can remain infectious on inanimate surfaces for up to nine days at room temperature. However, they can quickly become inactive using common disinfectants, and they can also dissipate at higher temperatures, the authors wrote. Nevertheless, It is still unclear whether the new coronavirus behaves similarly.

In copper and steel it is quite typical, it’s almost two hours”, The CDC director said Thursday, Robert Redfield, to US lawmakers, referring to how long the new coronavirus can be active in these types of materials. “But I will say that on other surfaces, cardboard or plastic, it is longer, so we are seeing this

The agency said it is likely that there is a very low risk of propagation of products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at room temperature. A spokeswoman for the CDC, in a statement sent by email, said the agency is still investigating how contagious the virus can be when deposited on more common everyday surfaces.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week said it has no evidence that COVID-19 has been transmitted from imported products, but the situation remains “dynamic”And the agency said it will evaluate and update the orientation as necessary.

“The big important message to take home is that this is probably a small proportion of the transmission of respiratory viruses“, said Timothy brewer, professor of epidemiology and medicine at University of California, The Angels. “In the community, these viruses probably do not survive on surfaces for a long time.

Brewer He explained that such viruses tend to survive longer in low temperature and low humidity environments, “that is why many respiratory viruses are seen during winter

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