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After the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Wuhan, China on 30 December 2019, the number of people getting affected by it is rapidly increasing due to its highly contagious nature. This newly emerging respiratory disease has now been detected in more than 100 locations across the world, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The World Health Organization (WHO) declared novel coronavirus a pandemic with more than 1,25,048 (6729 new) people getting infected and over 4,613 (321 new) people killed worldwide.
As the Novel Coronavirus continues to accelerate, people are worried about surfaces or things they touch. Tests conducted by the US government and scientists found that coronavirus can spread through the air, from touching things that are contaminated by the infected person and direct close contact with a person.
The test results published in the study showed that the viable virus can be detected on copper up to four hours, on cardboard up to 24 hours and on plastic and stainless steel up to two-three days. However, the findings have not yet been reviewed by other scientists .
Another similar study published in the Journal of Hospital Infections concluded that human coronaviruses such as Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and coronavirus or endemic human coronaviruses (HcoV) can survive on inanimate surfaces like glass, plastic or metal for up to nine days .
These viruses can be inactivated by disinfectants which contain 62-71 per cent ethanol, 0.5 per cent hydrogen peroxide or 0.1 per cent sodium hypochlorite within one minute. However, it is still unclear whether the new coronavirus survives in this way.
Currently, there is no vaccine available to protect against coronavirus. So, what we can do to prevent this disease is to maintain some basic personal hygiene habits such as washing hands properly with soap and water. If you are sick, wear a mask and avoid touching contaminated surfaces.