A new study from the Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine has found that COVID-19 can live on the skin for up to nine hours, compared to only about 1.8 hours for influenza A virus.
The researchers tested a sample of the virus on a model comprised of human skin autopsies. The human models had been deceased for only 24 hours, since skin cells remain mostly resilient the first 24 hours after death. The researchers found that COVID-19 lived for 9.04 hours on the skin and influenza A virus lived for 1.82 hours. When the researchers mixed the virus with mucus, COVID-19 lasted an additional two hours.
The study highlights the need for active handwashing and hygiene since, fortunately, both viruses were deactivated 15 seconds after 80 percent ethanol hand sanitizer was applied.