With so many of us staying home from work and staying inside to avoid contact with people possibly infected with the covid-19 virus, we wonder just how long the virus lives on different surfaces.  Recently the coronavirus was found on a cruise ship 17 days after passengers had left.  The viral RNA was found in cabins that had not been cleaned yet.  Just because you have pieces of RNA that carry the virus's genetic information, does not mean that there is an infection.

The New England Journal of Medicine published a study that tested how long the virus can remain stable on different kinds of surfaces. What they found was the virus was detectable on copper for up to 4 hours, on cardboard up to 24 hours and on plastic and steel for up to 72 hours.

The study did find that you are more likely to be infected by close contact with an infected person than touching a contaminated surface. That said, the report goes on to say that it is still important to be conscious of what you're touching. Wearing rubber gloves can help with that.

Remember your best line of defense is stay home, and WASH YOUR HANDS . And I feel more comfortable wearing my mask.

More on this story in The Guardian.

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