Fomite transmission is acknowledged as one of the potential transmission routes of SARS-CoV-2. Thus, appropriate cleaning and disinfection of surfaces is one of the non-pharmaceutical control measures recommended by public health. However, while adequate cleaning and disinfection may be important to sever this chain of transmission of COVID-19, excessive cleaning and disinfection has led to an increase in accidental exposure to harmful cleaning and disinfection by-products due to heightened concerns about SARS-CoV-2 persisting on food, food packaging, and environmental surfaces. Improving public health practitioners’ understanding of appropriate cleaning and disinfection practices and the risks of misuse and overuse of disinfectant products would help to guide public health recommendations in public and private settings.
Tina Chen is a certified public health inspector and holds a Master of Public Health from the University of Waterloo, with a focus on environmental health. As one of the Environmental Health & Knowledge Translation Scientists at the NCCEH, Tina is involved in knowledge synthesis and translation of research evidence on a variety of environmental health issues to support practitioners and policy-makers. She also regularly facilitates NCCEH webinars and helps to promote networking among environmental health practitioners across Canada.
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