COVID-19: How effective is outdoor spraying?

In an interview with the News Strait Times newspaper, Professor Dr Sanjay Rampal shared his view on the effectiveness of public sanitisation.

He said that the effectiveness of public sanitation was questionable for a number of reasons.

  • the method might not actually be killing all harmful viruses or bacteria in the entire environment or living spaces. This was because outdoor areas were extensive, comprising homes, neighbourhoods, shops, transportation, workplaces and others.
  • if we ‘carpet bomb’ all organisms in an area, we may actually kill many good organisms along with the harmful ones.
  • if only one part of the environment was sanitised, there was a possibility that the virus is brought back to the sanitised area from unsanitised areas.
  • the spraying disinfectant on sidewalks and in parks was not an efficient use of disinfectant supplies, and it had not been proven to reduce the risk of Covid-19 infection to the public.

He suggest that cleaning and maintaining a hygienic environment using existing practices is important. However, he does not recommend mass spraying of disinfectants on public areas.

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