With the latest outbreak of human infection from coronavirus affecting hundreds of people in the area of Wuhan, China at the beginning of 2020, several different discussions and precautions have been carried out worldwide to help contain and control the spread of the disease across the globe. While government and health agencies struggle to control the situation at a global scale, they invite the general population to increase their precaution and carry out simple sanitation measures to avoid contamination.
Coronaviruses (CoV) are a group of viruses that affect humans, causing a range of different symptoms from the common cold to Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). These viruses are particularly dangerous because they can be carried and transmitted between different species, which increases their potential of spreading out to a global scale.
For the latest outbreak, a new type of coronavirus seemed to have been transmitted from bats in local markets in southern China. The Covid-19 virus has now been confirmed in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, USA, Germany, France, and Singapore, with numbers increasing.
As at 20th of February 2020, we have seen 2130 deaths and 75,751 individials confirmed effected globally. * Source https://www.coronatracker.com/
The Covid-19 affects human bodies similar to the common flu or other respiratory illnesses, presenting coughing, sneezing, and difficulties breathing. In more severe cases, individuals might develop pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and, eventually, death.
Ministry of Health (MOH) is considering the risk of contamination if you have been in close contact, within 2 m, and for a prolonged period of time, at least 30 minutes with a contaminated individual. In cases where flu-like symptoms are presented after contact with a suspected contaminated person, you must seek medical assistance immediately.
It is essential to avoid specific areas where a high incidence of the virus is reported. As it transmits through surface and air, it is necessary to keep your respiratory system clean and free of contamination. Standard measures to prevent contamination are:
Bio-Fogging of the Indoor Environment
One of the most common routes of contamination of the Covid-19, is through contact with contaminated surfaces. In other words, the virus can fixate itself on various surfaces and remain latent until in touch with the human body. Some viruses are known for surviving over 30 months on dry surfaces.
By touching contaminated surfaces and posteriorly touching eyes, mouth, and nose, individuals manually bring the virus into their mucosa, where it then infiltrates the organism. Therefore, keeping surfaces clean and adequately disinfected is of crucial importance to patient’s safety and sanitation of office spaces and common areas.
Moreover, the process of indoor environmental disinfection involves procedures of cleaning disinfection and protection, which should be carried out by trained professionals. In cases where the population might be at risk of outspread contamination, it is essential that the personnel dealing with this potential hazard have the proper training to avoid further spread of the virus and cross-contamination.
Disinfection of Surfaces in the Indoor Environment
More importantly, the disinfection of contaminated surfaces also requires handling of potent chemicals, since detergent cleaning is known for not eliminating microbial contamination, and even potentially spreading the contamination from one surface to the next. Therefore, it is of importance to accurately assess the area and allow for proper personnel to handle the cleaning procedure. These can involve the use of hydrogen peroxides and chlorine-containing agents with quaternary ammonium compounds formulations that should be treated adequately and with proper training.
High-risk environments such as hospitals, schools, office buildings, and other areas with high circulation should be submitted to environmental disinfection and surface protection. The appropriate steps for cleaning & disinfecting the area should be followed according to the Infection Prevention and Control Practice Handbook, making use of personal protective equipment and following protocol. Finally, all public spaces at potential risk of contamination should be disinfected with professional procedures to help suppress the outspread of the Covid-19.
Hospital staff and professional cleaners are equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE) that protect them from getting infected with the virus and from direct contact with the cleaning products used. In do it yourself (DIY) procedures, these materials are absent or of inferior quality and might increase the chances of contamination for the person carrying out the procedure.
Moreover, because the Covid-19 is still not fully understood, there is a chance that it might benefit from incorrect cleaning procedures and spread-out even further. For example, cleaning with the incorrect use of swipes could, in fact, spread the virus to different surfaces, increasing its contamination rate.
All professional cleaning staff addressing to disinfection of spaces in the potential risk of coronavirus infections are required to use:
Get Professional Coronavirus Disinfection
The novel coronavirus (nCOV) was first reported in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. This novel virus differs from the previously reported coronavirus and is believed to have been transmitted to humans by bats hosts in a local market.
The most commonly reported symptoms are:
The virus can also promote lower respiratory tract illnesses like pneumonia and bronchitis. In cases of infection in individuals that present weakened immune systems, the virus is capable of leading to severe debilitation and, eventually, death.
By the begging of February 2020, the 2019 n-CoV had been confirmed in China, Japan, Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong, Australia, Germany, Taiwan, Malaysia, United States, Macao, Vietnam, France, United Arab Emirates, Canada, Philipines, Russia, Italy, India, United Kingdom, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Nepal, Finland, Sweden, and Spain. The total death toll surpassed 2130 individuals, with another 75751 being confirmed contaminated. All agencies recommend avoiding traveling to and from these destinations and following sanitary measures to prevent contamination.
Presently, there is no treatment or vaccines directed to fight the coronavirus in the human organism. As most symptoms attack the body similarly to the common flu, medical assistance is provided to alleviate those symptoms as the body’s natural antigens fight the infection. In case individuals have been or suspect to have been exposed to the virus, they should seek medical assistance immediately.
Face masks are recommended for those who are confirmed cases of coronavirus and also for those who have fallen sick during this period. Although not every case of cold will necessarily be caused by the virus, it is essential to prevent passing the virus along to other individuals.
Cleaning staff and health professionals are in close contact with infected and patients at risk of infection and also their bodily fluids. The use of mask and googles in these professionals is mostly to reduce the risk of transmitting the disease to these workers.
The virus has presented incubation periods for up to 7 - 14 days, and recommendations are that you should monitor your health closely during this period after visiting a contaminated with confirmed cases of coronavirus.
All students and staff that have been to mainland China should be on a leave of absence period for 14 days after returning. In case no flu-like symptoms are presented, the individual is cleared to return daily activities.
Till this moment, there is no cure or proper treatment for the coronavirus. Patients presenting early age symptoms should be treated for common flu. Those with serious diseases should be medically assisted in a hospital to prevent health complications.