When news of COVID-19 pandemic came to light in December 2019, the world as we know it changed forever. The number of confirmed cases – globally and domestically – increased at such an alarming rate that by March 2020, nations across the globe began taking drastic measures to prevent further spreading of the virus. The Malaysian government followed suit in worldwide efforts to flatten the curve by implementing Movement Control Order (MCO) that saw border closures, travel restrictions, general prohibition of social activities and gatherings, immediate closure of schools, government and private premises, and etc. With the exception of “essential” sectors and services that were allowed to operate, albeit at half capacity and with strict adherence to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) set by the Ministry of Health, all other economic activities came to a screeching halt. Supply chains have been disrupted; unemployment rates have skyrocketed with companies resorted to conduct their business online therefore require less employees or are forced to shut down permanently. Despite the implementation of unprecedented government stimulus packages and interest rates dropping
LIVING THE ‘NEW NORMAL’
Although there are signs of improvement in certain economic sectors, however, the possibility of new waves of infection is inevitable. The uncertainty surrounding the duration and severity of the crisis indeed presents a range of challenges for the construction and property sector such as a delay in construction or cancellation of projects as well as building materials and labour shortages. Containing the COVID-19 pandemic can only be managed by an unprecedented high level of cooperation, collaboration and solidarity from various ministries and the public in general. For instance, the Ministry of Works has collaborated with CIDB Malaysia and Ministry of International Trade and Industry to develop a new normal SOPs that enabled the sector to operate safely, protect its workers and reduce the risk of spreading the infection. Property developers and building owners have also begun exploring various design strategies to revitalize commercial office spaces to become more COVID-secure to protect the wellness of its occupants and visitors, and ensuring business continuity. This includes reconfiguring and retrofitting the interior design layout according to the six feet social distancing rule as per the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) recommendation as well as installing other innovative features as such biometric and thermal screening, touchless contacts for restrooms and etc. Many key industry players including Nippon Paint Malaysia are also stepping up their responsibility in formulating solutions for the marketplace, which not only keep the spread of infection at bay but also help create a safer interior environment.
SUSTAINABLE SOLUTIONS FOR SAFE INTERIOR SPACE
Even when practicing social distancing and sanitization has become an important part of our lives, recent independent market research indicated that when cleaning, 88% of us tend to overlook the largest surface in any indoor space – THE WALLS! Being Asia’s No.1 coating expert, Nippon Paint Malaysia places strong emphasis in Research and Development (R&D) activities, which remains a core priority to its success in product innovation. In response to global efforts against COVID-19 and creating a sustainable and safe environment for the community, Nippon Paint Malaysia has launched the first-of-its-kind anti-viral and anti-bacterial paint in the country, the Nippon Paint VirusGuard.
NIPPON PAINT VIRUSGUARD
Since embarking on health and wellnessfocused coatings two decades ago with the introduction of Malaysia’s first odourless paint, Nippon Paint Malaysia has brought in various innovative solutions such as the Green Choice Series, Child Wellness Range and Indoor Wellness Range, and now Antimicrobial Health and Wellness Range. The launch of Nippon Paint VirusGuard
represents the brand’s continuous efforts in improving the overall health and wellness of our communities in Malaysia, as we continue to adapt to the new normal and take precautionary measures in our homes, workspaces and offices, while keeping everyone safe.
NIPPON PAINT VIRUSGUARD SILVER ION TECHNOLOGY PROVEN TO BE EFFECTIVE AGAINST VIRUSES RELATED TO RESPIRATORY DISEASES
Nippon Paint VirusGuard utilises the Silver Ion Technology, formulated from one of the world’s oldest natural antimicrobial that is effective in mitigating the growth of viruses and bacteria such as the hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD), influenza A (H1N1), Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus as well as Human Coronaviruses (HCoV-229E) when in contact with the paint film. While HCoV-229E is different from coronavirus strain that is causing the current COVID-19 pandemic, however being the similar enveloped type of virus to the current COVID-19 pandemic, Silver Ion Technology has shown its effectiveness in mitigating the growth of the viruses, in view of respiratory diseases will continue to impose an immense worldwide health burden and are among the most common causes of severe illness and death worldwide. During an accredited 3rd party laboratory testing conducted by Analytical Lab Group earlier this year, Nippon Paint VirusGuard has demonstrated high antimicrobial efficacy in accordance to JIS Z2801 standard, an international testing standard on Test for Antiviral Activity and Efficacy:
• 99% effective against Human
Coronaviruses (HCoV-229E) in 6 hours
• 99% effective against H1N1
• 99% effective against HFMD (Cox-A16)
• 99% effective against E.Coli, S.Aureus, MRSA
Safe for adults, children and even animals, the Silver Ion Technology prevents the spread of viruses and bacteria through a three-step approach:
• Deactivation of the function of viruses and bacteria
• Reducing its ability to multiply and reproduce
• Inhibiting its growth that ultimately causes the death of the bacteria and viruses.
Leveraging on the Silver Ion Technology for its anti-viral and antibacterial properties, this antimicrobial coating aims to create a protected and safe environment for all, to ensure that homes, workspaces and public premises are safe and conducive especially during this pandemic. Ideal for any indoor spaces, the Nippon Paint VirusGuard contains the following properties:
• Ultra-low Volatile Organic Compound (VOC)
• Superior washability
• Scrub resistance
• Mould and fungus resistance
• Long-lasting colour
• Easy and hassle-free maintenance
Nippon Paint VirusGuard is an environmental-friendly coating certified by both SIRIM QAS and Singapore Environment Council, making it safe for adults, children, and even pets, and ideal to be used especially for indoor environment. As a water-based paint, Nippon Paint VirusGuard can be applied plastered, skim coated or fibreboard substrate, with the recommended painting system as shown in figure on the right.
In times of pandemic, it is critical for everyone to play their part in adhering the safety and hygiene measures to flatten the curve. Nippon Paint Malaysia takes a proactive step by rolling out the #RuangSelamat initiative as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) to create a safer indoor environment for all. Through #RuangSelamat, Nippon Paint Malaysia has donated over 1,000 litres of Nippon Paint VirusGuard to Hospital Sungai Buloh in appreciation of their frontliners’ utmost commitment, dedication and courage during this unprecedented time. Since the breakout of COVID-19 in Malaysia, the frontliners have work tirelessly around the clock to protect the community even though they too are at risk of being infected with the deadly virus. With this in mind, Nippon Paint Malaysia has specifically selected its new antimicrobial coating for the repainting of the hospital premise to help maintain a healthy level of indoor wellness as the frontliner continue their efforts in saving lives and keeping the nation safe. Further, Nippon Paint Malaysia has partnered with the Malaysian Institute of Property and Facility Managers (MIPFM) to distribute 600 litres of Nippon Paint VirusGuard to 42 property management agencies in Malaysia as an added protection for their management offices and guardhouses as well as public spaces with high-traffic footfall. Since its launch, Nippon Paint VirusGuard has been widely used across the country, namely at Selgate Rawang Hospital, KPJ Selangor Specialist Hospital, Pantai Hospital Ayer Keroh, Tun Hussein Onn Eyes Specialist Hospital, Jesselton Medical Centre, Hospital Sultanah Aminah, Klinik Kesihatan Pekan Nanas and more.
VirusGuard is specially formulated with anti-viral and anti-bacterial performance. It is scientifically proven to be effective against Covid-19 and HCoV which causes respiratory infections NOTE: Nippon Paint VirusGuard serves to reduce the transmission of viruses and bacteria through inactivation process. It does not warranty users’ immunity to viruses and bacteria. Product Features: • Anti-viral (effective against harmful viruses such as SARS-CoV-2, H1N1 and Coxsackievirus A16) ** 99.9% effective against COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) • Anti-bacterial (effective against common bacteria such as E. coli, MRSA and Staphylococcus Aureus) • Anti-fungus and mold property • Superior washability • Near zero VOC during application and after painting • Environmentally friendly paint – Certified by Singapore Green Label Scheme • Long lasting colors • Highly recommended for use on interiors such as childcare, kindergarten, clinics, hospitals, medical facilities and commercial buildings such as offices and warehouses. NOTE: Nippon Paint VirusGuard serves to reduce the transmission of viruses and bacteria through inactivation process on painted surfaces. It does not warranty users’ immunity to viruses and bacteria.