The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have corrected earlier warnings, now saying that the coronavirus "does not spread easily" from "touching surfaces or objects."
The federal health organization originally said it "may be possible" to spread COVID-19 through contaminated surfaces. It now includes "surfaces or objects" under a list detailing ways in which the virus does not easily transmit, although it is unclear when the change was made.
"I think this new guideline helps people understand more about what does and doesn't increase risk. It doesn't mean we stop washing hands and disinfecting surfaces. But it does allow us to be practical and realistic as we try to return to a sense of normalcy," Dr. John Whyte, the chief medical officer for the healthcare website WebMD, told Fox News.
The virus also does not easily spread from human to animal, or from animal to human, the CDC said.
The organization reminded people that the virus can easily transmit between people and that social distancing measures are still encouraged.