SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease COVID-19, has been shown to be consistently more stable and infectious on plastic money cards like credit or debit cards than on banknotes. bank, according to a study.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many businesses stopped accepting cash payments to reduce the spread of the virus. Although neither the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nor the World Health Organization has ever banned the use of paper money, many businesses still only accept card payment. more than two years later.
It turns out that this decision, while well-intentioned, could have been misguided.
The study showed that the COVID-19 virus is not able to grow on a banknote. However, the virus actually shows much greater stability on plastic money cards, with live virus still being detected 48 hours after initial deposit, the team from Brigham Young University in the US said.
“At the start of the pandemic, we had this massive outcry for companies to stop using cash; all of these companies just took that advice and said OK, we’re only using credit cards” said study author Richard Robison, professor of microbiology and molecular biology at BYU.
The study published in PLOS ONE concluded that the use of credit and debit cards rather than cash as a COVID-19 prevention measure is not recommended.
For the study, the team analyzed a pile of $1 bills, quarters, coins and credit cards and inoculated the cash with SARS-CoV-2. Cash, coins and cards were then sampled and tested for the virus at four subsequent time points: at 30 minutes, four hours, 24 hours and 48 hours.
SARS-CoV-2 was difficult to detect on dollar bills, even just 30 minutes after being placed there. The team found that the virus had been reduced by 99.9993% after 30 minutes. They tested again after 24 and 48 hours and found no live virus on the tickets.
In contrast, the virus only saw a 90% discount on money cards after 30 minutes. While this reduction rate increased to 99.6% in four hours and 99.96% in 24 hours, the live virus was still detectable on bank cards 48 hours later.
The coins behaved similarly to plastic cards, with a strong initial reduction in virus presence, while still testing positive for live virus after 24 and 48 hours.
The above article was published from a telegraphic source with minimal changes to the title and text.