COVID-19 Has Redefined Airborne Transmission & Ventilation

Abstract:

Over a year into the covid-19 pandemic, we are still debating the role and importance of aerosol transmission for SARS-CoV-2, which receives only a cursory mention in some infection control guidelines.12

The confusion has emanated from traditional terminology introduced during the last century. This created poorly defined divisions between “droplet,” “airborne,” and “droplet nuclei” transmission, leading to misunderstandings over the physical behavior of these particles.3 Essentially, if you can inhale particles—regardless of their size or name—you are breathing in aerosols. Although this can happen at long range, it is more likely when close to someone, as the aerosols between two people are much more concentrated at short range, rather like being close to someone who is smoking.4

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