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COVID-19 and postal packages

1. What is the risk of getting COVID-19 from packages delivered through the postal system?

A recent study published by The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) reported that the causal agent of COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) is able to persist for up to 24 hours on cardboard, in experimental settings (e.g. controlled relative humidity and temperature). In practice however there is no evidence of the infection ever being transmitted through contaminated packages that are exposed to different environmental conditions and temperatures.

2. Are people working in the supply chain including logistics, control services, retail, etc. at risk of getting COVID-19 by handling packages? What measures can be taken to reduce the risk of getting infected in this type of work setting?

People working in the supply chain, including logistics, control services, retail, etc. are not at greater risk to of getting COVID-19 as a result of managing packages. ECDC does not recommend any special measures at the supply chain over and above those addressed to the general public: frequent and thorough hand washing and use of alcohol-based hand disinfectants, keeping a distance from other employees, and not working if showing signs of respiratory symptoms.

3. Are couriers at risk of getting COVID-19 by handling packages? What measures can be taken to reduce the risk of getting infected in this type of work setting?

People working as couriers are not at greater risk of getting COVID-19 as a result of managing packages. Couriers delivering packages at homes are advised to keep a distance from the customer, use alcohol-based hand disinfectant frequently (and always before and after contact with a customer), and avoid working if showing signs of respiratory symptoms.

Source: ECDC

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