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Hundreds of scientists say coronavirus is airborne, ask WHO to revise recommendations: NYT

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Hundreds of scientists say coronavirus is airborne, ask WHO to revise recommendations: NYT

 

2020-07-05T164759Z_1_LYNXMPEG640II_RTROPTP_4_HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS-BRITAIN-SEQUENCING.JPG

FILE PHOTO: A computer image created by Nexu Science Communication together with Trinity College in Dublin, shows a model structurally representative of a betacoronavirus which is the type of virus linked to COVID-19, better known as the coronavirus linked to the Wuhan outbreak, shared with Reuters on February 18, 2020. NEXU Science Communication/via REUTERS

 

(Reuters) - Hundreds of scientists say there is evidence that novel coronavirus in smaller particles in the air can infect people and are calling for the World Health Organization to revise recommendations, the New York Times reported on Saturday.

 

The WHO has said the coronavirus disease spreads primarily from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth, which are expelled when a person with COVID-19 coughs, sneezes or speaks.

 

Rising coronavirus cases in 39 U.S. states cast a shadow over the nation's Fourth of July celebrations as health experts worried that holiday parties will cause a further spike in infections that could overwhelm hospitals. Freddie Joyner has more.

 

In an open letter to the agency, which the researchers plan to publish in a scientific journal next week, 239 scientists in 32 countries outlined the evidence showing smaller particles can infect people, the NYT said https://nyti.ms/2VIxp67.

 

The WHO did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

 

Whether carried by large droplets that zoom through the air after a sneeze, or by much smaller exhaled droplets that may glide the length of a room, the coronavirus is borne through air and can infect people when inhaled, the scientists said, according to the NYT.

 

However, the health agency said the evidence for the virus being airborne was not convincing, according to the NYT.

 

"Especially in the last couple of months, we have been stating several times that we consider airborne transmission as possible but certainly not supported by solid or even clear evidence," Dr. Benedetta Allegranzi, the WHO's technical lead of infection prevention and control, was quoted as saying by the NYT.

 

(Reporting by Rama Venkat in Bengaluru; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2020-07-06
 

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