One Of Canada's Top Doctors Said There's No Evidence That COVID-19 Is Airborne
The World Health Organization acknowledged the possibility though.
There are a lot of questions about this virus. Is COVID-19 airborne is one that's being asked recently. While the WHO is looking into the claim, one of Canada's top doctors said that the evidence isn't really there to prove that.
Dr. Howard Njoo, Canada's Deputy Chief Public Health Officer, answered a question during a press conference about the emerging claims that COVID-19 is airborne.
He said that these findings are not being looked over rigorously like they usually would when going through a peer review before being published in a scientific journal.
So, because of that, a lot of the data and "nitty-gritty details" are missing.
"From the evidence, what we've seen from the epidemiology and so on to this point, there's no evidence that COVID-19 is airborne," Dr. Njoo said.
He explained that in medicine, an airborne disease is one that's usually very infectious where particles linger in the air for several hours or even days.
Those tiny droplets can then infect people who come into contact with them in the air.
"What I think is a bit misleading for the general public is that the word airborne means certain things," Dr. Njoo said.
He believes that COVID-19 is not airborne in the classic sense of the definition.
The WHO acknowledged on July 7 that there is the possibility of airborne transmission but that the evidence is not definitive.
That's after an open letter was released by over 200 scientists that argued smaller particles than previously reported can carry the virus.
Scientists argue that this poses more of a danger.
"I don't think it's a game-changer," Dr. Njoo said when asked about the WHO recognizing that the virus could be airborne.
Dr. Njoo also said that like other respiratory infections, COVID-19 is mainly transmitted through droplets.
Most are large and usually fall to the ground within a few feet of the person.
However, he did note that there are smaller droplets too.
"Based on what we've done so far in terms of the public health measures, they've been proven effective," Dr. Njoo said.
Also, he isn't the only one wary about the airborne claim.
Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s Provincial Health Officer, called the letter controversial.