Scientists warn of airborne transmission of COVID-19

"It's time to address airborne transmission of COVID-19," declared 230 scientists in a recent letter. One of them explains what that means in practical terms.
fan in front of green wall

On Monday, more than 230 scientists from around the world declared “It’s time to address airborne transmission of COVID-19.”

In a letter signed by Washington University in St. Louis faculty and published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases directed toward “Most public health organizations, including the World Health Organization,” the scientists urged that public health organizations need to make recommendations beyond hand-washing and mask-wearing. (The WHO has acknowledged the letter during a recent press briefing.)

Public health guidelines must address every potentially important pathway to slow spread of the disease, the letter states. This would include measures that account for airborne transmission, including increased ventilation, supplemental ventilation with airborne infection controls, and avoidance of overcrowding.

Brent Williams, associate professor in the department of energy, environmental, and chemical engineering at the McKelvey School of Engineering, is one of the experts in aerosols who reviewed the letter before its publication and signed it.

“In the research community, we are mostly focused on fully understanding the details of this issue so we can continue to provide the most accurate information to medical experts and policy makers to help them to make informed decisions,” Williams says.

“This letter came from a place where the research community thought there was a lag in policy keeping up with the rapid-paced science underway to characterize the transmission of this virus.”

Here Williams answers questions about aerosols, microdroplets, and containing the spread of COVID-19:

The post Scientists warn of airborne transmission of COVID-19 appeared first on Futurity.

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