What's The Risk Of Staying In A Hotel?

What's The Risk Of Staying In A Hotel?
In our series "What's the Risk?" experts weigh in on what risks different scenarios pose for transmitting COVID-19.

When it comes to getting sick with COVID-19, you might be thinking about this, and we have too. Joel Allen asked: What's the risk of getting COVID-19 if I stay in a hotel or Airbnb?

We asked the experts: Katie Cary, vice president of infection prevention for HCA Continental Division; Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pediatric infectious diseases physician at the Mayo Clinic; and Dr. Irfan N. Hafiz, infectious disease physician and Northwest Region chief medical officer at Northwestern Medicine.

Their take: Contracting COVID-19 from going to an Airbnb or hotel is medium risk.

"The risk of staying in an accommodation like Airbnb or a hotel would be primarily related to whether someone who was infected stayed in the room prior to you or used some of the common areas," Rajapaske said.

"You're going to maintain social distancing when you're in your hotel room. Same with an Airbnb. So I would just make sure that whatever hotel or Airbnb that you're going to stay at has those good cleaning protocols in place and they have a plan for how they're going to manage it," Cary said.

"They do clean the rooms there. And additionally, you know, you're either traveling by yourself for work or you're with family. So it is that nuclear family concept there," Hafiz said.

"There have been reports of detection of virus on certain surfaces within hotel rooms, especially one study that showed relatively high levels on pillows and pillowcases when someone who was ill stayed in that room prior. So I think it's really important that hotels and Airbnbs clean very well between customers and that you can also do some cleaning yourself when you arrive to disinfect any high-touch surfaces, and do that frequently during your stay as well," Rajapaske said.

If you have a question about your risk, send us a video to whatstherisk@newsy.com. You can see answers to other questions here