The CDC updated its guidelines on cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, now saying that in most cases, household cleaners and soaps will suffice, and panic buying disinfectants is unnecessary.
During the first few weeks of the coronavirus pandemic, when it was unclear how the virus spread, Americans raided the shelves for hand sanitizers and industrial disinfectants out of fear of surface contamination.
“Disinfection is only recommended in indoor settings, schools, and homes where there has been a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 within the last 24 hours,” said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky at the White House COVID-19 response briefing on Monday.
She clarified that routine, daily cleanings with soap or detergents can be enough to “substantially reduce virus levels on surfaces,” Fox News 5 reported.
Walensky noted that studies indicate the majority of coronavirus cases spread via close contact between an infected person and others, rather than from interacting with a surface that has germs on surfaces.
People are still encouraged to wash their hands regularly for overall protective purposes, and to wear masks and maintain social distance.