Traditionally in our departments, we have used alcohol-based sanitizers to wipe down surfaces and objects. With massive shortages of consumables and supplies during the COVD-19 outbreak, we have to look at cheaper alternatives that are readily available and are as effective. Household bleach, diluted to an appropriate concentration is recommended by the WHO for surface disinfectant. Due to its low cost, this is an ideal option for LMICs, both at healthcare facilities as well as staff members’ homes.
How to make the correct mix of bleach for wiping surfaces, keys, phones (careful), door handles and cards for COVID-19
What you need
Any bleach is fine, as long as it’s between 3.0% – 3.5% sodium hypochlorite (written on the bottle)
Add 25ml of bleach to an empty 750mls bottle to make a 0.1% solution
Add 93ml of bleach to an empty 750mls bottle to make a 0.5% solution
[Guidelines vary, with European/Australian listing 0.1% but WHO/CDC recommending 0.5% for a surface cleaner – Thank you to Dr Sarah Ashley for contributing!]
Top up to 750ml.
If you are using different size bottles, the ratio is 1:29 for 0.1% or 1:7 for 0.5%