NSW Health has published tips on how to keep shared spaces clean and safe to use during the COVID-19 outbreak.
NSW Health has published tips on how to keep shared spaces clean and safe to use during the COVID-19 outbreak.

EXPLAINED: Best way to clean house, office to avoid virus

NSW Health has published tips on how to keep retail businesses, offices and homes clean and safe during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Trying to keep an office, retail business, classroom or home clean and safe has become a clear priority for most Australians after the COVID-19 outbreak started, so we tracked the official tips from the Health Department on how to clean spaces in the best way.

According to government, these are the main areas to keep in mind:

1. Clean and disinfect: Spaces must be clean from rubbish and then disinfected. Removal of germs such as the virus that causes COVID-19 requires thorough cleaning followed by disinfection.

The length of time that the COVID-19 virus survives on inanimate surfaces will vary depending on factors such as the amount of contaminated body fluid - such as respiratory droplets - present and environmental temperature and humidity.

Coronaviruses in general are unlikely to survive for long once droplets produced by coughing or sneezing dry out.

2. Frequency is key: It is good practice to routinely clean surfaces with detergent and also when visibly soiled and immediately after any spillage.

3. Frequently touched surfaces: Surfaces such as door handles, bedrails, tabletops and light switches should be cleaned frequently.

Detergent solution (as per manufacturer's instructions) can be used, with the exact choice of detergent determined by the nature of surface and likely degree of contamination.

Detergent-impregnated wipes may be used but should not be used as a replacement for the mechanical cleaning process.

4. Less frequently touched surfaces: Areas such as floors, ceilings, walls and blinds, can be cleaned with detergent solution or wipes (as per manufacturer's instructions). Damp mopping is preferable to dry mopping.

Walls and blinds should be cleaned when visibly dusty or soiled.

Window curtains should be regularly changed in addition to being cleaned when soiled.

Sinks and basins should be cleaned regularly.

Source: These information was provided by the Northern NSW Local Health District and is based on the Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare, Canberra: National Health and Medical Research Council (2019).

For more details visit the NSW Health COVID-19 web page.