How COVID-19 may be transmitted

Jocelyn Perez, Reporter

There are still a number of unanswered questions that many have about COVID-19. The virus is fairly new and information is limited to even experts on how the virus is spread as they continue to conduct data. 

According to health experts, the health measures that have begun to take place during late January have affected the transmission rate of COVID-19 to drop drastically. Novices have begun to pick up on a basic understanding of what precautions to take to avoid the transmission of the virus, but how the disease is being spread is still up for questioning. 

Most people are familiar with the common sanitary precautions it takes to avoid a cold, flu, diarrhea, or other known common diseases, but the new coronavirus leaves many fearing and wondering how to avoid this particular disease. 

There has been a recent concern on whether COVID-19 can be spread through clothing and shoes considering that people constantly step out into the world and may still go to work or go to the grocery store. 

There is a very low risk of getting COVID-19 on shoes. However, a change of outfit would not hurt for those who are in high-risk environments such as hospitals and workers in these environments, according to Carol Winner, a public health specialist. 

People should not be too concerned about washing their clothes or cleaning their shoes immediately after entering their house, but health experts are not sure of the possibility of contamination, Dr. Michael Gardam, an infectious disease physician, stated to Global News. 

When concerned about what objects are contaminated by COVID-19, health officials have educated the public that the bacteria can be attracted to a certain material and stick longer to it than other materials. 

As experts are still trying to confirm the accuracy of what surfaces are more likely to be contaminated and for how long a new study found that the virus may be feasible in the air for up to 3 hours, cardboard up to 24 hours, copper up to 4 hours, and on plastic and stainless steel for as long as 72 hours. Another claim that seems to concern the public went viral on Facebook that COVID-19 is being spread through gas pumps. 

“I just spoke with a friend who got called into an emergency meeting at his hospital,[…] he said the virus is spreading quickly from gas pumps,” Brent McDonald, a Facebook user, wrote. 

The Centers for Disease Control Agency in response, investigated this claim and found it to be partly false because the main source from which COVID-19 is transmitted, comes from face-to-face contact. They also stated while touching surfaces that contain the virus and then touching your mouth or eyes is a way COVID-19 is transmitted, it is not the main way in which the disease is passed on.