Ask 2: Will the coronavirus spread through mail packages sent through international mail carriers?
HOUSTON – At KPRC 2, we’re dedicated to keeping Houstonians informed. As part of our new Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston.
The original question: Will the virus from China spread through mail packages that are being sent through international mail carriers? And should that be a concern?
The short answer: No, to both questions.
The long answer: Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures," reads a statement on the CDC’s FAQ page.
The CDC said there is still a lot that is unknown about the newly emerged 2019 novel coronavirus and how it spreads but that there is no evidence to support the transmission associated with imported goods.
"There have not been any cases of 2019-nCoV in the United States associated with imported goods,” the statement concluded.
The Houston Health Department reported that there are no cases of the coronavirus in Houston or Harris County, as of Jan. 28. You can find more updates from the HHD here.
The CDC has reported six patients who tested positive with the virus, 114 patients who have tested negative and 121 patients pending a result in the U.S. but so far none of them are in Texas, as of Jan. 31. You can find more updates from the CDC here.
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