“Seriously People, Stop Buying Masks!” Those are pretty strong words…from The United States’ top doctor, US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams. His message, posted to Twitter, was a response to face mask shortages as people stocked up due to coronavirus concerns. He goes on to say they are NOT effective in preventing the general public from catching coronavirus. 

That’s our number ”3” of Corona Virus.  The number “2” is use the right disinfectants to kill the virus. This week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a list of EPA-registered disinfectant products that have qualified for use against SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

According to EPA professionals, Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses, meaning they are one of the easiest types of viruses to kill with the appropriate disinfectant product. Just follow the use directions for use on the product’s master label, playing close attention to how long the disinfectant should remain on the surface. 

Consumers using these disinfectants on an enveloped emerging virus should follow the directions for use on the product’s master label, paying close attention to the contact time for the product on the treated surface (i.e., how long the disinfectant should remain on the surface).

Among the general household items on the EPA list are:  Clorox products including Clorox Multi Surface Celeaner + Bleach, Clorox Disinfecting Bleach, Clorox Performance Bleach and Clorox Germicidal Bleach.  Clorox Cleaun Up Cleaner + Bleach, Clorox Disinfecting Bathroom Cleaner, Clorox Disinfecting Wipes and Clorox Toilet Boil Cleaner with Bleach. 

Lysol had a number of products on the list including Lysol Brand Power Plus Toilet Bowl Cleaner, Cling & Fresh Toilet Bowl Cleaner, Lime & Rust Toilet Bowl Cleaner, Bleach Mold and Mildew Remover, and Clean & Fresh. 

Products appearing on EPA’s list registered disinfectant products have qualified for use against COVID-19 through the agency’s Emerging Viral Pathogen program. This program, dating back to 2016, allows product manufacturers to provide EPA with data, even in advance of an outbreak, that shows their products are effective against harder-to-kill viruses. 

To view the list of EPA-registered disinfectant products, visit https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2

Just because an item isn’t on the list, doesn’t mean it isn’t or is effective at killing SARS-CoV-2.  Worth noting is a recurring ingredient in most of those products was bleach. 

Another way to keep your home clean after wiping down frequently touched surfaces is  or Number “1” Corona Virus item — wash your hands and wash them frequently to prevent introducing new microbes. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the best option to keep your hands free of germs that could spread to surfaces or your face is by washing with soap and water for 20 seconds.

Hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can also reduce the number of germs on your hands to a lesser extent, but CDC said products that are alcohol-free or have a lower percentage of alcohol are not as effective.

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