How Long Can 5 Common Diseases Survive on Surfaces?

Norovirus can survive outside the body for up to 5 months.

Aftermath is committed to the health and safety of the families we serve.. Why is the proper cleanup of biohazards important? Because diseases spread quickly. It’s critical to stop their progression as soon as possible to fully protect not only your health, but the health of everyone around you. Certain viruses or bacteria can remain on a surface long after a biohazard incident; if they aren’t fully remediated, they may present a risk to you even years later.

How long can diseases survive on a surface?

Many communicable diseases can survive outside the body for an extended period of time. Conditions that may linger on household surfaces after an outbreak include:

1. H1N1 (Swine Flu)

In 2009, the influenza virus H1N1 began to spread. By August 2010, the World Health Organization called swine flu a global pandemic. Swine flu reminded us how quickly disease can spread in a connected world and how many millions of lives are impacted following an outbreak.

H1N1 can survive outside the body for 2 to 8 hours.

2. Norovirus

Each year, norovirus affects 20 million people in the United States and causes upwards of 800 deaths. Most of these deaths are either children or the elderly. When it comes to protecting the most vulnerable people in our society, only absolute commitment to safety will suffice.

Norovirus can survive outside the body for days or weeks.


A form of staph infection, MRSA begins as small bumps and grows into deep, painful abscesses in the skin. MRSA is highly contagious and potentially life threatening. When bacterial strains like MRSA affect communities, our work is even more critical.

MRSA can survive outside the body for days or weeks.

4. Hepatitis

There are 5 unique types of hepatitis. While each is varied, they all contribute to liver disease. Hepatitis C alone affects an estimated 2.7 million people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and most people are not aware that they are carriers of the virus.

Hepatitis C can survive outside the body for up to 3 weeks.


Today, the world is more connected than ever. This makes it imperative that we prevent against common communicable diseases. Even if there is no perceived risk, Aftermath treats every case with the utmost care to help provide you, your family, and your community the peace of mind that comes with a job done well.

Remember, when the health of the people you love is at stake, you want a partner who defines success by the smallest of margins. Aftermath brings a superior level of care and professionalism to every situation, regardless of size or scope. Lean on us when the question is “What now?”