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Covid-19 can remain in air for hours, warns Thai respiratory doctor

Jul 24. 2020
Dr Manoon Leechawengwongs, a specialist at Bangkok’s Vichaiyut Hospital
Dr Manoon Leechawengwongs, a specialist at Bangkok’s Vichaiyut Hospital
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By The Nation

Latest tests show that the Covid-19 virus can spread via airborne transmission, Dr Manoon Leechawengwongs, a respiratory specialist at Bangkok’s Vichaiyut Hospital, said today (July 24).

He said scientists now believe the virus can spread in airborne droplets smaller than 5 microns when patients exhale, speak, cough or sneeze. The droplets can spread more than 2 metres and remain in the air for several hours.

"Recently, US scientists at the University of Nebraska took an air sample from a Covid-19 patients’ room to cultivate in a Vero-E6 cell culture and found that the number of Covid-19 viruses increased," he explained on Facebook. "The test showed that Covid-19 virus can spread through airborne transmission."

He said that the World Health Organisation and government agencies worldwide now recognised the airborne spread of this disease and were advising people to wear face masks.

"Currently, we can conclude that Covid-19 can spread through aerosol, droplets, and by touching contaminated surfaces," he said.

He added that wearing a face mask is the best way to prevent the spread of Covid-19 because it has been shown to cut chances of transmission by up to 75 per cent.

"Also, people should maintain distance with others and wash their hands regularly," he added.

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