The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 and its associated COVID-19 pandemic rapidly spread throughout the world testing modern technology in an unprecedented manner. Due to the high rate of asymptomatic carriers, the disinfection of public spaces is increasingly important as global restriction begins to lift.
This study evaluated the use of an environmental RT-qPCR assay for SARS-CoV-2 to validate disinfection protocols in a senior living facility known to be contaminated with the virus. Initially an environmental-friendly disinfectant Thymol-based disinfectant was used in the contaminated rooms.
However, after analysis, it was determined that SARS-CoV-2 was still present.
An additional round of disinfection was completed with sodium hydroxide which eliminated the virus in 8 of 9 samples tested. The protocol described allowed the biohazard cleaning team to efficiently confirm whether disinfection was successful or whether further actions would be required.
Overall, the study points to the need for monitoring in addition to disinfection practices to reduce the risk of community transmission.