People keep sharing the CNBC article that “proves” that COVID-19 is an airborne virus that can stay in the air for 8 hours!
However, both claims are FALSE, and we will show you why…
CNBC Confirmed That COVID-19 Is Airborne For 8 Hours?
Many people seem to think so, from the way the messages about CNBC confirming that COVID-19 is airborne keeps circulating :
BREAKING NEWS! covid -19 I confirmed as airborne and remain 8 hrs in air! So everyone is required to wear mask everywhere!! BREAKING NEWS:
Coronavirus – confirmed to be airborne!!!
Copper, Steel – 2 hours
Paper, Plastic – 3-4 hours
Air – 8 hours or more depending on conditions.
WHO reversed their earlier position that Covid virus is not air borne. Pls avoid all public places with aircon especially small or confined ones
We took the liberty of placing a HOAX overlay on the message to avoid it being further shared as fact.
The CNBC COVID-19 Airborne Hoax Debunked!
Now, CNBC is a reliable source of news, and that article is genuine. However, COVID-19 is NOT an airborne virus, and here is why we say so…
Don’t Just Read The Headlines!
The problem is people don’t read anything beyond the headlines. The CNBC article is genuine, but it doesn’t actually say that WHO confirmed that the COVID-19 coronavirus is airborne.
It merely points out that certain medical procedures that healthcare professionals perform may aerosolise the droplets, letting them stay in the air “a little bit longer”.
So those healthcare workers should take extra precautions when they are performing those procedures. That is NOT the same thing as WHO declaring that the COVID-19 coronavirus is an airborne virus.
And it certainly did NOT state that the virus can survive for 8 hours in the air, longer than even on paper and plastic!
WHO : No, COVID-19 Is NOT Airborne
WHO also debunked this false claim, stating that :
The virus that causes COVID-19 is mainly transmitted through droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks. These droplets are too heavy to hang in the air. They quickly fall on floors or surfaces.
You can be infected by breathing in the virus if you are within 1 metre of a person who has COVID-19, or by touching a contaminated surface and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth before washing your hands.
COVID-19 Aerosols Will NOT Last For 8 Hours
There is no evidence that COVID-19 aerosol can last for 8 hours. The latest study that was done to see how long the COVID-19 coronavirus can last as an aerosol was the NIH study – Aerosol and surface stability of HCoV-19 (SARS-CoV-2) compared to SARS-CoV-1 – that was published in The New England Journal of Medicine.
This study noted that SARS-CoV-2 (that’s the COVID-19 coronavirus) can remain viable when kept aerosolised for 3 hours. That’s 3 hours, not 8 hours.
The Aerosol Results Were Created Artificially
But before you panic, those 3 hours were based on very specific, man-made conditions in a lab.
The NIH scientists generated aerosols of the SARS-CoV-2 virus using a three-jet Collison nebuliser, and kept the aerosols suspended in a rotating Goldberg drum.
Only under those artificial conditions, were they able to keep the SARS-CoV-2 aerosols viable for 3 hours.
However, outside of specific medical procedures like intubation, it is very hard to generate aerosols. Whenever we cough or sneeze or speak, what comes out are droplets, not aerosols.
That’s why WHO is advising medical staff to follow “airborne precautions” for certain medical procedures.
The public, who will never perform these procedures, only have to follow “droplet precautions”.
COVID-19 : How To Keep Safe!
Here are a few simple steps to stay safe from COVID-19 :
- Avoid suspected cases or disease hotpots, like hospitals, if possible!
- Avoid public events and crowds
- Keep our hands clean with soap or hand sanitiser
- Keep our home, office, vehicles, etc. clean
- If you need to wear a surgical mask, make sure you put it on and remove it properly!
- Wash your food with water (and soap) after purchase and before preparation
Recommended : COVID-19 : Hand Sanitiser or Soap? Which Is Better?
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