New Delhi: As opposed to what is being rampantly practised as a trusted method to fight COVID-19, the World Health Organisation has said spraying disinfectant on the streets does not eliminate the new coronavirus and even poses a health risk. While it does not have any effect on new contamination, it can have a negative impact on health. Also Read - Prince Charles Says he Feels Lucky After Coronavirus Recovery
In a document on cleaning and disinfecting surfaces as part of the response to the virus, the WHO says spraying can be ineffective. “Spraying or fumigation of outdoor spaces, such as streets or marketplaces, is… not recommended to kill the COVID-19 virus or other pathogens because disinfectant is inactivated by dirt and debris,” explains the WHO. Also Read - Social Distancing, Thermal Screening: These Are Centre's Fresh SOPs For Restaurants, Hotels, Hospitality Units
“Even in the absence of organic matter, chemical spraying is unlikely to adequately cover all surfaces for the duration of the required contact time needed to inactivate pathogens.” The WHO said that streets and pavements are not considered as “reservoirs of infection” of COVID-19, adding that spraying disinfectants, even outside, can be “dangerous for human health”. Also Read - Humans Start Defecating in Open, Toronto Park Puts up 'Be a Good Neighbor, Pick up After Your Human' Signboards
The document also stresses that spraying individuals with disinfectants is “not recommended under any circumstances”. “This could be physically and psychologically harmful and would not reduce an infected person’s ability to spread the virus through droplets or contact,” said the document.
So what to do?
The international organisation has said that if disinfectants are to be applied, this should be done with a cloth or wipe that has been soaked in disinfectant.