NEWS | WHO addresses possibility of COVID-19 airborne transmission

By: The News Team

Multiple studies found increasing evidence that droplets from infected persons floated in the air instead of immediately sinking to the ground, as initially believed. | Photo credit: Shutterstock

The World Health Organization (WHO) addressed the possibility of COVID-19 airborne transmission in their new guidelines, which were released on July 9.

Aerosol Transmission

WHO previously mentioned that COVID-19 immediately sinks to the ground after first spreading through small droplets from an infected person’s nose and mouth. However, increasing amounts of recent scientific reports revealed the significance of aerosol transmission in the spread of the virus.

WHO explained that an aerosol is a respiratory droplet small enough to linger in the air, spreading from one person to the next. WHO outbreak reports suggested that the transmission of the virus by aerosols may have been responsible for outbreaks in crowded indoor spaces such as choir practices, restaurants, and fitness classes. Nonetheless, WHO argued that more research is still needed to deliberately assess and investigate such instances.

Precautionary measures

With these new discoveries regarding the transmission modes of the coronavirus, Dr. Edsel Salvana, an infectious disease specialist at the University of the Philippines’ National Institutes of Health (UP-NIH), urged the public to be more cautious when venturing outside the home.

“This possibility of airborne transmission is not new, and even if the evidence is far from definitive, it is always prudent to take precautions,” Salvana remarked. “Everyone else needs to be meticulous with cloth or surgical mask wearing. Avoid crowded areas and enclosed spaces with poor ventilation.”



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The Manila Collegian

The Manila Collegian


The Official Student Publication of the University of the Philippines Manila. Magna est veritas et prevaelebit.