Hundreds of scientists have said that coronavirus is airborne and smaller particles in the air can infect people. Claiming that there’s evidence for such spread, the scientists have asked the World Health Organization (WHO) to revise recommendations, the New York Times reported on Saturday.
In an open letter to WHO, 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 publication reported.
The health agency 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.
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 report.
However, the health agency said the evidence for the virus being airborne was not convincing, the report added.
“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.
Globally, the number of coronavirus cases has crossed 11.4 million.