New research shows coronavirus can survive up to 28 days on surfaces

Posted at 12:47 PM, Oct 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-13 15:47:19-04

TAMPA, Fla. — University of South Florida Professor Dr. Jay Wolfson and health experts around the world are studying the latest research project on the coronavirus.

"This thing gives us surprises almost every week. We learn something new, and it's usually unpleasant every week," said Wolfson.

The new research is from Australia's National Science Agency, and it found the virus could survive and remain infectious on surfaces like glass, steel, and paper for up to 28 days.

"What they are concerned about, what we are all concerned about it, is if you have some viable virus on your fingers and you touch your eyes or you touch your nose or you touch your friend's eyes or nose, there's a greater risk of it being brought into the body if there's enough of it there," said Wolfson.

But Dr. Thomas Unnasch, also with USF Health, says this study was done with perfect conditions for a virus to thrive.

"They put the virus under different surfaces and then preserve them in the dark at ideal temperatures and humidity. So it's not too surprising that under those ideal conditions, that it would last quite a bit longer than it would under normal conditions."

While experts agree COVID-19 primarily spreads from person to person through droplets in the air, there is still more to understand about how it can transfer from objects or surfaces to people.

"People do have a proclivity to touch their face and their eyes, so if you are in a place that's not familiar to you and you are using things that are unfamiliar to you, just be careful," said Wolfson.

"Your own cell phone, if you are the only one using it, that's not a big deal. But door handles, faucet handles elevator buttons things like that. Wash your hands after you do that. That's a really good idea," said Unnasch.

All of the experiments in this study were done in the dark. Research has shown direct sunlight can kill the virus.

This story was first reported by Erik Waxler at WFTS in Tampa Bay, Florida.

Coronavirus Testing Sites - Kern County

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State-Provided Sites
  • Must have an appointment
  • Free, but if have insurance they will bill
  • No screening criteria

Kern County Fairgrounds
1142 South P Street, Building 4, Access Gate 27

Rosamond Library
3611 Rosamond Blvd, Rosamond CA 93560

Arvin Public Health
204 S Hill Street, Arvin

Wasco Library
1102 7th Street

County-Provided Sites
  • Must have an appointment
  • Free
  • No screening criteria
  • Operating with existing provider

Oildale - Good Samaritan Hospital
901 Olive Drive, Bakersfield
  • For Registration call (661) 215-7725
  • Drive-Thru Only
  • Hours: Monday - Friday 8 am - 8 pm, Saturday 8 am - 12 pm

Ridgecrest - Ridgecrest Regional Hospital
1081 N. China Lake Blvd, Ridgecrest
  • For Registration: Text the word "testing" to 833-774-4968 Or Call 866-774-9984
  • Drive-Thru Only
  • Hours: Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 10:30 am

Delano - Delano Regional Medical Center
1401 Garces Hwy, Delano
  • No Drive-Thru option
  • Hours: Monday – Friday 9 am – 5 pm

Kern River Valley - Kern Valley Hospital
6412 Laurel Ave, Mt Mesa Wheelchair Logo
  • For Registration call (760) 379-2681 ext 267
  • Drive-Thru Only
  • Hours: Wednesday - Thursday from 7 am - 2 pm.
Tehachapi - Adventist Health Tehachapi Valley
1100 Magellan Dr 93561

Lamont - Kern County Library
8304 Segrue Road, Lamont, CA 93241
  • For registration call 661-869-6018
  • Drive-Thru and Walk-Up<
  • Testing available for ages 5+ only; parents must be present and give consent for children
  • Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday 9 am - 2 pm; Tuesday, Thursday 2 pm - 7 pm

Taft - West Side Health Care District
  • For Registration call (661) 765-1935
  • Drive-Thru<
  • TTesting available for all ages; parents must be present and give consent for children
  • Hours: Tuesday – Friday 9 am – 1 pm & 3 pm – 7 pm; Saturday 11 am – 3 pm