What can an individual do to reduce their risk of a severe case of COVID-19? In the absence of a cure, improving the health of an individual, especially pulmonary health, is important. Hydration, balanced nutrition, appropriate exercise and regular rest and sleep may help. Once an individual is infected, fresh air and cleaning the environment are recommended.
COVID-19 is mainly transmitted via aerosols which are exhaled by infected people, and can float and linger in the air for hours. Cleaning indoor air with proper Ventilation and filtration to remove airborne particles and wearing well-fitted, high-quality Masks is essential to prevent transmission through this mechanism. There is also evidence of transmission through contact of particles with the eyes, and eye protection is recommended.
School guidelines must explicitly recognize that Covid-19 is an AIRBORNE virus and communicate proper precautions to the different stakeholders (including teachers, staff, parents and children). It is spread by inhaling AEROSOLS containing viral particles, which are exhaled by others. Keeping hands and high-touch surfaces clean is basic hygiene for all situations, but excessive use of disinfectants may be harmful, and do little to contain the spread of COVID-19 without airborne precautions in place as well.
This guideline is for individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 but have mild or no symptoms. Mild symptoms include low fever, mild fatigue, coughing, but without pneumonia symptoms and with no accompanying chronic illness. Where local medical resources are strained and cannot hospitalize individuals with moderate or even worse symptoms, this document can also provide guidance. Please keep in mind that advice provided here is designed for mild/no symptom individuals.
Universities have a unique opportunity to provide leadership and models of safe operation in the COVID-19 pandemic. Universities also have a responsibility to protect their staff, students, and the surrounding community from COVID-19 transmission.
The World Health Network, guided by the scientific advice of the Covid Action Group, made these recommendations in response to the 12/27/21 revised CDC Update that reduced SARS-COV2 positive individuals’ isolation time to 5 days. The recommendations are intended for local public health officials in the United States as well as globally who consider using the CDC’s recommendation without adapting it to their context and the latest scientific knowledge. The CDC’s changed recommendation for isolation of 5 days has not been justified based upon scientific analysis of the prevention of transmission, but rather on employer staffing needs due to substantial numbers of infected individuals.