The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are now publicly recognizing that people can become infected with the coronavirus through airborne transmission, especially in enclosed spaces with inadequate ventilation.
The Update includes Growing knowledge and international research show that the coronavirus can linger longer – for minutes and hours – in the air and move further than a meter.
The update will come two weeks after the CDC official website was updated to reflect this. A few days later, the agency will remove it “Booked in error” before it was fully checked.
The draft language seemed to imply that aerosol, or airborne transfer, was the primary cause of the coronavirus spread, and the CDC says it is not.
“Infections occur primarily through exposure to respiratory droplets when a person is in close contact with someone who has COVID-19,” explains the CDC.
The added section is titled “COVID-19 Can Sometimes Be Spread by Airborne Transmission” and contains information about smaller particles that remain in the air after an infected person leaves the room.
“Some infections can be transmitted by exposure to viruses in small droplets and particles that can linger in the air for minutes to hours,” it says.
“There is evidence that, under certain conditions, people with COVID-19 infected others who were more than three feet away. These transmissions took place in closed rooms with insufficient ventilation. Sometimes the infected person breathed heavily, for example when singing or exercising, ”says the new section on the CDC website read. “These transmissions took place in closed rooms with insufficient ventilation.”
The World Health Organization changed its guidelines in July, noting that the transmission of coronavirus and airborne particles is widespread in the air. Hundreds of scientists encouraged WHO to make recognition after research and studies.
In the meantime, medical experts are reminding people to wear masks and social distancing, and to wash their hands.
“This mask has been proven time and again effective as it has been found that COVID is transmitted by airborne droplets. This is an even bigger reason to be able to wear a mask. So masks are probably the most important thing if you are following those which you risk likely going down significantly, “said Dr. Nishant Anand, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of the Baycare Health System.
Dr. Anand said if you are within or outside of someone’s six feet, indoors or outdoors, he recommends wearing a mask.
“Recent events over the past few weeks are just a reminder that COVID has not gone away and I know we are all sick of hearing about this message, but we just need to be vigilant and safe,” he said.
Dr. Anand added that they generally recommend testing symptomatic individuals and, if anyone is concerned about exposure, consulting a doctor to determine the best time to test and quarantine for 14 days.