The guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in making cycles this week on the internet clarify what we know about coronavirus transmission.
The virus does not spread through contaminated surfaces, according to C.D.C. For those concerned about wiping grocery bags or disinfecting shipped packages, the the news headlines featuring this guide in the past may bring comfort.
But this information is not new: The C.D.C. has been using similar language for months. If anything, these headlines have gotten more focused on what we know about the virus.
Coronavirus is thought to spread primarily from one person to another, usually by drops when an infected person is dizzy, coughing or talking closely – even if that person does not show symptoms.
“The virus that causes Covid-19 is easily spread and spreads between humans,” the C.D.C. it says website. “Information from the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic suggests that this virus is spreading better than the flu, but not as effective as measles, which is highly contagious.”
The website also states that people can be infected by “touching a surface or object with a virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or perhaps their eyes.” But those are “not thought to be the primary means of spreading the virus.”
The format of C.D.C. The website was slightly modified this month, but the language about the surfaces remained the same. It appears to have been placed under a new subheading – “The virus does not spread easily in other ways” – on May 11, and more information on the difficulty of catching the virus from animals was added.
Kristen Nordlund, a spokeswoman for the agency, said The Washington Post said the changes followed an internal review and the product of “usability testing.”
“Our language of delivery has not changed,” Ms. Nordlund. “Covid-19 is spread primarily through close human contact with a human.”
The experts at C.D.C. and elsewhere are still learning about the new coronavirus.
There are questions about how virus particles can affect transmission rates. Researchers do not yet know if all the speech, coughing and sneezing of the particles that carry the particles is equally contagious, or if a certain amount of the virus needs to be transmitted for a person to become infected by breathing it. last week’s study found that talking alone can launch thousands of air droplets, and they can stay suspended for eight to 14 minutes.
It seems that the virus spreads easily when people are in close contact with one another – in a conversation, for example – or gathered in poor ventilation spaces, said Linsey Marr, an aerosol scientist at Virginia Tech.
He said that for someone to catch the virus from a surface, something seems to happen. First, the virus needs to be transmitted to the surface in sufficient amounts. Therefore, it will need to live on that surface until it is touched by other people. And even if it eventually moves, say, a person’s finger, it will need to survive on the skin until that person happens to touch an eye or mouth.
“There are still many conditions that must be met for delivery to occur by pressing these items,” Dr. Marr.
And since catching the coronavirus from a contaminated surface is still considered a possibility, people who prefer to wipe bags, boxes or park banks can still do so. The C.D.C. It is recommended to wash your hands frequently and regularly clean or disinfect frequently touching surfaces.