CDC revises coronavirus guidance to acknowledge that it spreads through airborne transmission


3D illustration of coronavirus on a colored background.

Leonello Calvetti | Stocktrek Images | Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revised its guidance on the coronavirus Monday, acknowledging that it can sometimes spread through airborne particles that can “linger in the air for minutes to hours” and among people who are more than six feet apart.

“These transmissions occurred within enclosed spaces that had inadequate ventilation,” the CDC’s new guidance says. “Sometimes the infected person was breathing heavily, for example while singing or exercising.”

The agency added that it is “much more common” for the virus to spread through close contact than through airborne transmission. 

The updated guidance comes after the agency mistakenly posted a revision last month that said the virus could spread through aerosols, small droplets that can linger in the air. The guidance was quickly removed from the CDC’s website because it was just “a draft version of proposed changes,” the agency said.

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

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