Can the coronavirus spread through the mail?
Reports of postal workers testing positive for the novel coronavirus have raised concerns that the pathogen could live on letters and packages, potentially exposing people to infection just from opening their mail or Amazon packages. The U.S Postal Service’s response: Don’t worry about it. “There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 can spread through the mail,” the postal service said last weekend, alluding to the disease caused by the virus and citing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization as its sources of information. The federal agency, which employs about 500,000 people, is heeding recommendations from the CDC and public health departments, it added. “The likelihood of an infected person contaminating commercial goods is low and the risk of catching the virus that causes COVID-19 from a package that has been moved, traveled and exposed to different conditions and temperature is also low,” according to WHO. “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,” according to the CDC. “Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods.”