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Policy paper

The Potential Mortality Effects of Physical Currency

2 March 2020 — By James Shepherd-Barron

The extent to which banknotes may or may not play a direct role in ‘the chain of communicable disease transmission’ has been questioned during the Covid-19 response. Whether they do or they don’t is perhaps less relevant than the belief among ‘at risk’ populations that they do. And this belief can have adverse secondary consequences when it comes to implementation of outbreak control measures.