WHO says fumigation of disinfectants can be harmful

fumigation in Pune by PMC
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Indu Bhagat

Pune, May 18, 2020: The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Saturday, said that spraying disinfectants on the streets to fight the novel coronavirus disease (COVID) could be harmful as it does not eliminate the virus. The health body has warned that spraying disinfectants outdoors even poses a health risk.


Spraying or fumigation of outdoor spaces, such as streets or marketplaces, is not recommended to kill the Covid-19 virus or other pathogens because disinfectant is inactivated by dirt and debris, the WHO says that the chemical spraying is also unlikely to cover all surfaces for the duration of required contact time needed to inactivate pathogens.


The WHO in the document further discouraged the spraying disinfectants on individuals as it could be harmful- both physically and psychologically, One may suffer from eye and skin irritation, bronchospasm and gastrointestinal effects if chlorine is sprayed on one for disinfecting. “Spraying individuals with disinfectants would not reduce the infected person’s ability to spread the infection-either via droplets or contact. Instead of direct spraying, disinfectants should be first mixed in water and then a piece of cloth or wipe should be soaked in it and then the area should be moped with the cloth”, the document added.