A study conducted by Batelle found no SARS-CoV-2 virus (the coronavirus that causes COVID-19) on library materials after 72 hours. The study results (PDF, 4 pages) were released June 22 by partners OCLC, the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Battelle. The partnership's REopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums (REALM) project aims to provide science-based information to libraries and museums as they consider reopening.
The study included five commonly circulated library materials: hardback (buckram) book cover, paperback book cover, plain paper pages within a book, plastic book covering, and DVD case. The study's results show that temperature and humidity levels typically found in air-conditioned library spaces allow for the "natural attenuation of the [virus]... after three days of quarantine." These results, as well as those from subsequent studies, will inform decision-making by Minitex and our partners as we continue the process of safely restarting our resource sharing and delivery services.
REALM is also curating set of resources produced by libraries and museums to share their latest planning on how best to safely reopen during the pandemic.