MOH says no to ‘disinfection boxes’ as not effective against Covid-19, possibly harmful

Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah giving a press conference at the Health Ministry in Putrajaya, April 4, 2020. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah giving a press conference at the Health Ministry in Putrajaya, April 4, 2020. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, April 15 — The Health Ministry does not recommend so-called “disinfection boxes” being proposed as a countermeasure to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), said Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

He said there was no evidence that such devices work as claimed, and the chemicals used were more likely to cause harm to users.

“The ministry received several applications to evaluate the use of disinfection boxes or chamber, tunnel, booth, partition or gate to curb the Covid-19 infection after the method has been used by various countries.

“The ministry’s technology evaluation branch has conducted assessments on several models of the disinfection boxes from various countries and also on the existing models in the country and found out that is not effective,” he told a press conference this evening.

Dr Noor Hisham explained that the process of disinfecting using the boxes involves a person entering and being sprayed with chemicals for up to 30 seconds.

“All the models which were reviewed had different types of chemical substances. Based on the evaluation conducted so far, we find out that there is no proof to show that the models are effective in reducing the infection of Covid-19.

“The time period of 20 to 30 seconds is not sufficient for an effective disinfection process. The process also can’t kill the virus in the body of a person and the chemicals which were used in the models can harm the human body, including mouth, eyes and skin,” he said.

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