Iss: “Traces of coronavirus detected on masks up to 4 days after contamination”


Hygiene measures – Clean the surfaces with a detergent before disinfecting them and pay maximum attention to the use of surgical masks – reads the ISS report – since the presence of infectious viral particles can be “detected up to 4 days after contamination”.

“The data shown are the result of evidence from scientific literature – explains Paolo D’Ancona, epidemiologist of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità – but they must be declined based on environmental situations. For example, coronaviruses resist better at low temperatures and in Furthermore, the fact that they survive does not in itself mean that they transmit the disease: if there are few viral particles, in fact, the infectious load is less “.

“” Unfortunately, however, – he adds – it is not known what the minimum dose to infect is, also because it also depends on the immune defenses of individuals. Therefore, you must always be very careful“.

This explains the attention of the experts, especially in Phase 2 where there will be a recovery in the movement of people and a great use of personal protective equipment. “The washable masks – continues D’Ancona – should be used only once and then immediately put in the washing machine, without placing them on the furniture. The disposable ones should be thrown into the unsorted collection immediately after use. In both cases they should be touched only on the elastic bands, washing before and after hands. Finally, be careful not to throw them on the ground, the infectious risk is minimal but the impact on the environment is high “.

Sanitization or disinfection? The differences – The report also specifies the distinction between widely used terms, such as disinfection, a “complex of cleaning procedures and operations” which includes the exchange of air in all environments, and the disinfectionor the treatment to reduce the microbial load that must be carried out using disinfectant products authorized by the Ministry of Health.

Then there is the cleansing, which consists in removing dirt and is a necessary action before disinfection, because “the dirt is rich in microorganisms that multiply there and are able to reduce the activity of disinfectants”.

Products that have a disinfectant action, that is capable of killing pathogens, “should not be confused with detergents and sanitizers”. In fact, no authorization is provided for the latter.

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