Many people have been curious about the spread of coronavirus when exchanging physical cash, whether it is US dollars, Pounds, Dirhams and so forth. Well, a new study has found the new new coronavirus can remain on some surfaces, including banknotes and phone screens, for up to 28 days.
The study, published in the Virology Journal,said the virus survived longer than 28 days on paper banknotes than on plastic banknotes (also known as Polymer banknotes).
Before Covid-19 was declared a pandemic, China had started decontaminating its paper currency, suggesting concerns over transmission via paper banknotes. Apparently, theirs concerns inadvertently well-founded.
The CEO of CISRO Larry Marshall said establishing how long the virus survived on surfaces enabled scientists to more accurately predict and prevent its spread.
While the precise role of surface transmission, the degree of surface contact and the amount of virus required for infection is yet to be determined, establishing how long this virus remains viable on surfaces is critical for developing risk mitigation strategies in high contact areas.
Scientists from CSRIO found that coronavirus which causes was more likely to survive in lower temperatures and on non-porous or smooth surfaces such as mobile phones, credit and debit cards and ATMs.
This is a important finding given that touchscreen devices such as mobile phones (which are also used for mobile banking) and bank ATMs are ‘high touch’ surfaces which may not be regularly cleaned and therefore pose a transmission risk of Covid-19.
The results reinforces the need for good practices such as regular hand-washing and cleaning surfaces.