Copper has a natural antimicrobial efficacy against most common bacteria. Independent laboratory tests show that, when cleaned regularly, copper kills greater than 99.9% of the following bacteria within 2 hours of exposure: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis (VRE), Staphylococcus aureus, Enterobacter aerogenes, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and E. coli O157:H7.
These bacteria are considered to be representative of the most dangerous pathogens capable of causing severe and often fatal infections.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that infections acquired in U.S. hospitals affect two million individuals every year and result in nearly 100,000 deaths annually. The use of copper alloys for frequently touched surfaces, as a supplement to existing CDC-prescribed hand-washing and disinfection regimens, has far-reaching implications.
Potential uses of the copper where it can help to reduce the amount of disease-causing bacteria in healthcare, public spaces and generally in high attendance facilities includes door and furniture hardware.
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