CDC removes statement on airborne virus transmission, saying it was posted in error
Researcher Tehya Stockman plays a clarinet in a lab at the University of Colorado Boulder to measure aerosol output.(Richard Read / Los Angeles Times)
By RICHARD READSEATTLE BUREAU CHIEF
SEP. 20, 20208:49 PM UPDATEDSEP. 21, 2020 | 9:53 AM
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SEATTLE — The Centers for Disease Control says it posted new guidance on airborne transmission in error and has removed the language.
“A draft version of proposed changes to these recommendations was posted in error to the agency’s official website. CDC is currently updating its recommendations regarding airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19). Once this process has been completed, the update language will be posted,” the CDC said.
The new recommendations had stated that the coronavirus spreads most commonly in the air, through droplets or other tiny respiratory particles that apparently can remain suspended and inhaled.
This story will be updated. The previous version is below.
The coronavirus spreads most commonly in the air, through droplets or other tiny respiratory particles that apparently can remain suspended and inhaled, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says in new guidance.
The smaller particles, known as aerosols, are produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, talks or breathes and can be inhaled into someone’s nose, mouth, airways or lungs, according to the CDC, which says that, in general, indoor settings without good ventilation increase the risk of contagion.
“This is thought to be the main way the virus spreads,” the CDC has posted on its website. “There is growing evidence that droplets and airborne particles can remain suspended in the air and be breathed in by others and travel distances beyond six feet (for example, during choir practice, in restaurants or in fitness classes).”
Experts on aerosols and the coronavirus said the change constitutes a profound shift in understanding of how the virus that has claimed almost 200,000 lives in the United States spreads. However, the updated two-page explanation provided little new guidance on how to protect against airborne transmission.
— Lees op www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-09-20/coronavirus-aerosol-airborne-spread