Disinfecting Vs. Sanitizing – how to deal with Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

What is Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

The World Health Organisation defines COVID-19 (or ‘Coronavirus disease’) as the infectious disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus discovered in 2019 that had not been previously identified in humans. The fast-spread outbreak of COVID-19 is now considered a global pandemic, which means a new disease is considered to have spread ‘worldwide’.

For many who contract the virus, the symptoms may be mild – similar to a common cold. But in severe cases, the illness can be fatal. The virus is spread through coming into contact with droplets expelled from the nose or mouth when an infected person coughs, sneezes or exhales. These droplets pass through the air and land on surrounding surfaces, which are then touched or inhaled by others who can then become infected.

Current Australian recommendations to avoid catching or transmitting the virus are:

  • washing hands frequently with soap and water or using hand sanitizer when hand washing is not an option
  • coughing and sneezing into the crook of your elbow or arm (not your hands)
  • avoid touching your face as much as possible
  • practicing social distancing, i.e. keeping 1.5 metres away from other people wherever possible
  • self-isolating if you feel unwell, have travelled overseas in the last 14 days, or have been in contact with a confirmed case

What more can I do to protect myself and others?

It is crucial to follow best practice when it comes to sanitization and disinfection of surfaces, especially in highly populated enclosed spaces such as commercial office suites. Scientists believe the virus can survive on surfaces anywhere from a few hours to several days. Surfaces suspected of being infected should be cleaned with disinfectant to kill the virus and reduce the potential harm to yourself and others. But which practice is best?


The practice of disinfecting involves destroying or deactivating disease-causing bacteria and viruses on surfaces. Disinfecting is preferred for treating surfaces at a higher risk of contamination.


Sanitizing will generally only reduce the number of bacteria on surfaces to acceptable levels and is ineffective against some viruses. Sanitizing is generally considered effective enough for low risk situations.

A job best left to the professionals

Quality and experienced professional cleaners are trained and equipped to applying best practices to disinfection and sanitization of surfaces suspected of – or at risk of – contamination resulting from coronavirus.  A reputable professional cleaning company will have protocols in place to ensure compliance with the latest guidelines issued by the Australian Government and the World Health Organisation. This is especially crucial in workplaces such as shared offices and other close-quarters workplaces, given the highly transmissible nature of the virus.

Keen To Clean’s experienced and dedicated team of professional cleaners can assist in keeping your premises appropriately sanitized and disinfected, ensuring the safety of your patrons and helping you to do your part to reduce the spread of the outbreak. Whether it be an office, clinic, studio, retail premises or larger-scale commercial site, our experienced professional cleaners are here for you. We currently service commercial and private clients in both regional and central Sydney, Melbourne, and Adelaide.

Contact Keen to Clean for a free quote today. Together, we can get through this.