Seoul provides official guide to respond to new coronavirus

Kwak Sung-sun  Published 2020.01.31  18:41  Updated 2020.01.31 18:41


As the new coronavirus infection shows few signs of dwindling, the health authorities have come up with biosafety standards for handling the disease.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requested medical workers to consider all samples as potential sources of infection and cautiously treat them to minimize the risk of viral exposure because the pathogenic potential and the propagation kinetics of the new coronavirus is unclear.

A researcher is examining the new coronavirus at a state institute.

According to the KCDC guideline, all personnel handling new coronavirus specimens or the virus in laboratories should wear personal protective equipment such as respiratory protection, eye protection, lab coats, gloves, and any work that can potentially cause aerosol occurrence should be performed in the biosafety platform of class two and above.

They should also dispose of the waste as medical waste, under the Waste Management Act, it said.

The biosafety criteria for handling the new coronavirus samples or the virus should apply by the level of hazards of each work. Accordingly, handling potentially infectious materials should be carried out in a biosafety cabinet (class two and above) at a biosafety level two or higher, the guideline said.

The treatment of inactivated specimens should be practiced in the laboratory of biosafety level 2, and the experiment of direct handling of pathogens such as virus culture should be dealt with in BL-3, it added.

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