Covid can survive on clothing for up to 72 hours, study shows
Scientists monitored the stability of the virus on different types of material for 72 hours.
Covid-19 can survive on clothing for up to 72 hours, a new study has shown.
The study, which was conducted by De Montfort University (DMU), found that polyester poses a high risk for transmission with coronavirus still present after three days that could transfer to other surfaces.
The research involved adding droplets of a model coronavirus called HCoV-OC43 – which has a very similar structure and survival pattern to that of SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19 – to polyester, polycotton and 100% cotton.
It found that on 100% cotton, the virus lasted for 24 hours, while on polycotton, the virus only survived for six hours.
Particularly, this can pose a risk for healthcare workers, with researchers saying: "Our findings show that three of the most commonly used textiles in healthcare pose a risk for transmission of the virus.
"If nurses and healthcare workers take their uniforms home, they could be leaving traces of the virus on other surfaces."
Doctor Laird, head of the Infectious Disease Research Group at DMU, said: "While we can see from the research that washing these materials at a high temperature, even in a domestic washing machine, does remove the virus, it does not eliminate the risk of the contaminated clothing leaving traces of coronavirus on other surfaces in the home or car before they are washed."
Further information on the study can be found here.