Fear – harming the economy?
Following the publication of disappointing GDP data, the Chief Economist at the Institute of Directors, said: “There is a big question mark around how fast we can rebound back to pre-pandemic levels. Firms continue to face significant uncertainty around consumer demand and are still adjusting to operating under social distancing.”
The Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce said: “Companies, in discussion with their employees, will decide how and when to return to offices safely. To take those decisions, businesses need crystal-clear official guidance. Firms will be weighing up how they want to work in future. Many have seen benefits to productivity and work-life balance over recent months, and will want to keep elements of their new normal.”
Social distancing, hand washing, facemasks and disinfectants will all play an important role, and people should be reassured that, as an enveloped virus, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‑CoV‑2) is relatively easy to kill if the right disinfectant is used – easier to kill than non-enveloped viruses such as Norovirus for example.
It’s a virus!
Sadly, many organisations seem to be forgetting that Covid-19 is caused by a virus, and NOT a bacteria. Last weekend I visited a local pub operating excellent Covid-secure measures. We were met outside on arrival, our contact details were taken and we were led (one-way) to a table in the garden, where our order was taken with drinks delivered by a masked waiter, who took a contactless payment. Full marks so far, but a sign in the toilets asked customers to ‘use the ANTI-BACTERIAL gel provided’. In many cases, such as gels with high alcohol content, this would have been fine, but this gel did not have anti-viral properties!
Regular hand washing, especially before and after visiting people or public spaces is common sense. However, it is important to sanitise ‘touch points’ – those places or objects that are touched frequently, such as mobile phones, light switches, keyboards and door handles. Also, when sanitising, it is important to remember the ‘contact time’ of the disinfectant, which is the time that it takes to achieve the required disinfection. Nemesis eH2O acts very quickly – faster than bleach for example. However, some products take significantly longer so they should remain wet for longer.
Ventilation with fresh air helps to reduce the potential for infection, but consideration should be given to the survival times of coronavirus on different surfaces. Research earlier this year investigated Human Coronavirus Survival Times on Surfaces:
- Latex Gloves – 8 hours
- Disposable Gowns – 2 days
- Wood – 4 days
- Glass – 4 days
- Paper – 4-5 days
- Metal – 5 days
- PVC – 5 days
- Ceramics – 5 days
- Teflon – 5 days
- Plastic – 9 days
Ref.: Kampf, G. et al. (2020). Persistence of coronaviruses on inanimate surfaces and their inactivation with biocidal agents. Journal of Hospital Infection, Volume 104, Issue 3, 246 – 251.