NEW DELHI: The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has said spraying of disinfectants on individuals isn't recommended under any circumstances.
"Even if an individual is potentially exposed to the COVID-19, spraying disinfectants on external parts doesn't kill the virus that has entered your body," the Ministry said in an advisory here on Saturday.
Spraying individuals with chemical disinfectants are physically and psychologically harmful. Disinfectants were chemicals that destroy disease-causing pathogens or other harmful microorganisms, it said.
The Ministry said spraying of chlorine on individuals has harmful side effects and can lead to irritation of eyes and skin and potentially gastrointestinal effects, like nausea and vomiting. "Inhalation of bleaching agent can cause irritation of mucous membranes in nose, throat and breathing tract and can also cause bronchospasm," it said.
Also, use of such measures might result in a false sense of disinfection and safety, it said and added it could hamper public observance of hand washing and social distancing measures.
The Health Ministry said it had received many queries regarding the efficacy of disinfectants, like hypochlorite, spray to disinfect people.
The strategy seems to have gained tons of media attention and is additionally being reportedly used at local levels in certain districts/local bodies. On March 31, a gathering of migrant workers, including women and kids was seen being fumigated with a chemical solution after their arrival to a village in UP amid nationwide lockdown. The incident caught everyone's attention when its video went viral on social media.