Aerosols can travel 10 metres, ventilation can cut transmission risk: Govt’s new Covid guidelines

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Aerosols can travel 10 metres, ventilation can cut transmission risk: Govt’s new Covid guidelines

The Centre has issued new guidelines to stop the spread of Covid-19 amid a gloomy situation. The new advisory, which has been issued by the Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Centre, K Vijay Raghavan, said that apart from physical distancing and the use of masks, ventilation can decrease the risk of transmission.

Raghavan in the document, titled ‘Stop the Transmission, Crush the Pandemic’, urged people to rigorously follow Covid appropriate behaviour.

“Always Remember: People who show no symptoms can also spread the virus,” the advisory said.

“Ventilation is a community defense that protects all of us at home or at work,” the advisory said. “Introducing outdoor air in offices, homes and larger public spaces is advised. Measures to improve ventilation in these spaces must be taken up on urgent priority in urban and rural areas alike, recommendations for hutments, homes, offices and large centralised buildings are given,” it added.

“Just as smells can be diluted by ventilation, the dangerous concentration of the virus can be reduced by ensuring that outdoor air flows in,” it said.

The scientific adviser said that saliva and nasal discharged in the form of droplets and aerosols arr the primary mode of virus transmissions. While droplets fall within 2 meters from an infected person, smaller aerosol particles can travel up to 10 metres in the air.

“People should continue wearing a mask, wear double masks or a N95 mask,” the new guidelines said.

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“Ideally surgical mask should be used only once, but when pairing, you can use it up to 5 times by leaving it in a dry place for 7 days after one use (ideally give it some sun exposure),” it said.

Droplets emitted by an infected person land on various surfaces where they can survive for a long time, the advisory said and called for frequent cleaning of high contact points like door handles, light switches, tables, chairs and the floor.

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