TL;DR – Stay calm and don’t panic (buy).
Earlier this month, the National Environment Agency (NEA) released an interim list of household products that contain the appropriate concentrations of active ingredients that are known to inactivate coronaviruses.
We did a quick check on the NEA website and it seems that the list has been updated, with more products added.
One point to note though is that the COVID-19 virus is new, and no study has been conducted directly on the virus. However, because the COVID-19 virus is a coronavirus, published scientific studies using coronaviruses have been referenced.
According to NEA, detergent and water are adequate for general precautionary cleaning.
For disinfection of areas that are very likely to be contaminated with COVID-19 virus, disinfectant/cleaning products listed in the table below can be used:
Clorox Disinfectant Wipes
Clorox Scentiva Disinfecting Multi-Surface Cleaner (Various Scents)
Dettol Anti-bacterial Surface Cleanser Trigger Spray
FairPrice Anti-Bacterial Wet Wipes
Mr Muscle Multi-Purpose Cleaner (Various Scents)
Simple Green Clean Finish Disinfectant Cleaner
Softess Anti-Bacterial Wet Wipes (Various Scent)
Yuri Aganol Floor Cleaner
Dettol Antiseptic Disinfectant Liquid
Dettol Antiseptic Germicide
FairPrice antiseptic Germicide
Walch Antiseptic Germicide
Jackie Disinfectant & Air-Freshener
Jackie Disinfectant Spray
Clorox All Purpose Cleaner with Bleach
Clorox Bleach Original
Clorox Clean-Up All-Purpose Cleaner with Bleach (Various Scents)
Clorox Clean-Up Cleaner + Bleach
Essential Waitrose Thick Bleach Original
FairPrice Anti-Bacterial Bleach
Giant All Purpose Household Bleach
Mr Muscle Mold & Mildew
Yuri Bleach (Various Scents)
Another product that’s included in the list is the BestChem Bleach Disinfectant, which active ingredient is Sodium hypochlorite (3.5-4.5%). However, we are not able to find an image of the said product online.
Dettol Healthy Clean Bathroom
Mr Muscle Bathroom 5 in 1
Clorox Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Bleach
Magiclean Bathroom Stain & Mold Remover
Magiclean Toilet Bleach Power Cleaner
Mr Muscle Foaming Bleach Gel (Various Scents)
Dettol Healthy Clean Kitchen
Mr Muscle Kitchen Cleaner
Magiclean Kitchen Bleach
Magiclean Pipe & Sink Cleaner
Magiclean Pipe & Sink Declogger
Mr Muscle Sink & Drain Declogger
And here’s a list of active ingredients and their working concentrations that are effective against coronaviruses, according to published scientific studies:
- Sodium hypochlorite (0.1 – 0.5%)
- 70% ethyl alcohol
- Povidone-iodine (1% iodine)
- Chloroxylenol (0.12%)
- 50% isopropanol
- 05% benzalkonium chloride
- 50ppm iodine in iodophor
- 23% sodium chlorite
- Accelerated hydrogen peroxide (0.5%)
In addition to the use of cleaning agents, other treatments effective against coronavirus include steam and heat treatment.
NEA also included a few important points to note before using these products:
- Check the labels and use according to instruction, and be aware of the potential hazard of each product.
- Avoid contact with eye and skin when handling cleaning products, and keep them away from children.
- Do not mix different cleaning products and use in a well-ventilated area.
- For disinfection of highly contaminated surfaces or material, avoid the use of spray, and allow appropriate time needed for disinfection (refer to product instruction).
- This product list should be read in conjunction with the Guidelines and Advisories issued by NEA with instruction and guidelines on how to conduct proper cleaning and disinfection of premises.
The above list will be updated as data from more products are gathered, and as more products are assessed to be appropriate.
Before you make a dash to the nearest supermarket with the updated list, please be reminded that even though Singapore’s DORSCON level is at Orange at the moment, it’s not the end of the world yet.
And no, there is no need to stockpile on daily essentials either.
The Disease Outbreak Response System Condition (DORSCON) is a colour-coded framework that shows the current disease situation. And the purpose of the DORSCON framework is to provide us with general guidelines on what needs to be done to prevent and reduce the impact of infections.
It takes into account:
- The current disease situation overseas
- How transmissible the disease is
- How likely it is to arrive in Singapore
- What impact it may have on Singapore’s community
Even if there’s fatality (touch wood), it doesn’t mean that the DORSCON level will change to red.