The Honest Truth … Ebola and Enterovirus D68

The Honest Truth…

With increasing news coverage of Ebola and Enterovirus D68, many questions have been posed looking for clear answers. It is our goal to give you the information you need, without the need for extensive research while remaining clear and concise about the issues at hand.

Do you have any disinfectants that will kill Ebola and Enterovirus D68?

No one does. Currently there are no EPA registered products with kill claims for Ebola or Enterovirus D68. Why… well it all has to do with the testing process that any disinfectant must go through with the EPA to gain certification.

The requirements were established by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). FIFRA requires extensive test data to be submitted to prove that the solution is stable, non-harmful to humans or the environment, and has proven efficacy against any pathogens that are on the label. The antimicrobial testing is done by outside testing labs that use clinical isolates or approved alternates that are treated with the disinfectant at the recommended contact time (how long the surface must be in contact with the disinfectant). If the resulting culture shows a reduction that meets the requirement, the formula passes and if it meets all other criteria, the claim can appear on the disinfectant label.

We have outlined a few reasons why there may not be a disinfectant registered to kill these high profile microorganisms. First and foremost, it has nothing to do with not being able to kill Ebola or Enterovirus. According to the CDC’s Biosafety Guidelines Appendix B, Ebola is an enveloped virus, a category that is least resistant to disinfectants. Enterovirus D68 is a small, non-lipid virus, and is harder to kill but is still not the most resistant. The chart below shows the descending order of resistance to germicidal chemicals from the CDC.

The reason manufactures cannot say they have a disinfectant registered for Ebola or Enterovirus all comes down to the need for a testing protocol from the EPA and the need for lab isolates.

ebola chart

CDC has made the following recommendations to healthcare providers and hospitals:

For Ebola:

  • Disinfection
    • “Use a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered hospital disinfectant with a label claim for a non-enveloped virus (e.g., norovirus, rotavirus, adenovirus, poliovirus) to disinfect environmental surfaces in rooms of patients with suspected or confirmed Ebola virus infection. Although there are no products with specific label claims against the Ebola virus, enveloped viruses such as Ebola are susceptible to a broad range of hospital disinfectants used to disinfect hard, non-porous surfaces. In contrast, non-enveloped viruses are more resistant to disinfectants. As a precaution, selection of a disinfectant product with a higher potency than what is normally required for an enveloped virus is being recommended at this time. EPA-registered hospital disinfectants with label claims against non-enveloped viruses are broadly antiviral and capable of inactivating both enveloped and non-enveloped viruses.”  – Interim Guidance for Environmental Infection Control in Hospitals for Ebola Virus, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    • Hand Hygene

For Enterovirus D68:

  • Disinfection
    • “As EV-D68 is a non-enveloped virus, environmental disinfection of surfaces in healthcare settings should be performed using a hospital-grade disinfectant with an EPA label claim for any of several non-enveloped viruses. Disinfectant products should be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions for the specific label claim and in a manner consistent with environmental infection control recommendations” -  Severe Respiratory Illness Associated with Enterovirus D68 – Multiple States, 2014, CDC Health Alert HAN00369
    • Hand Hygiene
    • “Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds. Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. Avoid close contact such as kissing, hugging, and sharing cups or eating utensils with people who are sick. Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or shirt sleeve, not your hands.” Enterovirus D68, Centers for Disease control and Prevention.

What products from Betco® can we use today?

The following products meet the CDC Guidelines for disinfection with regards to Ebola:

The Following will meet the CDC Guidelines for disinfectant with regards to Enter virus D68:

Proper Hand Hygiene can be accomplished with the use of:



Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (201, Aug 1). Interim Guidance for Environmental Infection Control in Hospitals for Ebola Virus. Retrieved Oct 6, 2014, from Ebola ( Ebola Virus Disease): http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/hcp/environmental-infection-control-in-hospitals.html

Centers for Disease control and Prevention. (2010, June). Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories. Retrieved Oct 6, 2014, from CDC.Gov: http://www.cdc.gov/biosafety/publications/bmbl5/bmbl5_appendixb.pdf

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014, Sept). Enterovirus D68. Retrieved Oct 6, 2014, from Non-Polio Enterovirus: http://www.cdc.gov/non-polio-enterovirus/about/EV-D68.html

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014, Oct). Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations for Hospitalized Patients with Known or Suspected Ebola Virus Disease in U.S. Hospitals. Retrieved Oct 6, 2014, from Ebola ( Ebola Virus Disease): http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/hcp/infection-prevention-and-control-recommendations.html

United States EPA. (1910). Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act . Retrieved Oct 6, 2014, from United States Environmental Protection Agency: http://www.epa.gov/agriculture/lfra.html


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Andy Gail – AGail@betco.com

Facility Solutions Manager


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