On July 7th the World Health Organization acknowledged that “evidence is emerging” that the new coronavirus can spread air. Earlier, more than 200 scientists around the world sent a joint letter to WHO urging who to recognize the airborne transmission of the new coronavirus and to rewrite the guidelines for the protection of the new coronavirus.
Maria Van Kokov, head of WHO’s technical department for the outbreak of new crown pneumonia, said at a press conference on July 7 that “evidence is emerging” that the virus is spreading in the air, and WHO has been discussing airborne and aerosol transmission as a possible way to spread the virus.
WHO has previously said that the new coronavirus is mainly spread through droplets spewing from the mouth and nose of infected people, which can sink quickly after squirting out.
On July 6th an open letter to WHO was published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, in which 239 scientists from 32 countries outlined evidence that the new coronavirus can spread air.
The scientists want to emphasize that the new coronavirus can be suspended in indoor air and infect people nearby. If airborne transmission is an important factor in the pandemic, the consequences will be severe in poorly ventilated, crowded spaces. The new crown virus may be looking for new hosts in bars, restaurants, offices and markets around the world, causing group infections.
“We want WHO to acknowledge the evidence.” “This is definitely not an attack on WHO,” said Jose Jimenez, a chemist at the University of Colorado who co-published the open letter. It’s a scientific debate, but we think we need to be open because they still refuse to listen to the evidence after talking to them many times. “
Any change in the spread risk assessment could affect WHO’s current recommendation to maintain a 1m social distance, and scientists hope that WHO will rewrite the guidelines for protection.