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On the diamond princess – aerosol transfer case analysis



“We have surprises all the time,” said Dr. Conly. “This document seems interesting to me, but I think it took a long time to get to the line of trust.”

Dr. George Rutherford, a professor of epidemiology at the University of California at San Francisco, was also skeptical. He said that despite the hospital, “most cases in my head consist of large drops. Aerosol transfer – if you actually run with it, it creates a lot of dissonance. Are there situations where this can happen? Yes, maybe, but it’s a small amount. “

Dr. Tang and other scholars strongly disagree. “If I talk to an infectious person for 1

5-20 minutes and inhale some of their air,” said Dr. Tang, “isn’t this a much simpler way to explain transmission than touching an infected surface and touching the eyes? When you talk about an outbreak in a restaurant like the latter, the latter seems like a torturous way to explain the infection. “

In a new analysis, a team led by Parham Azimi, an indoor air researcher at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, investigated the Diamond Princess outbreak, where physical spaces and infections were well documented. More than 20,000 models were conducted of how the virus could have spread across the ship. Each simulation made different assumptions about factors such as social interaction models – the average time people spent in cabins, on the deck, or in a coffee shop, and how long the virus could live on surfaces. Each also reflects a variety of contributions from smaller, floating droplets, broadly defined as 10 microns or less; and larger drops that fall faster and infect surfaces or other people, say, on the eyes, mouth, or nose.

About 130 of these simulations to some extent replicated what actually happened in the Diamond Princess as the outbreak progressed. By analyzing these “most realistic” scenarios, the research team calculated the most likely contribution for each transmission route. The researchers concluded that smaller droplets predominated and accounted for about 60 percent of new infections both near, within a few yards of the infected person, and over greater distances.

“A lot of people said the transfer of the aircraft was going on, but no one had it,” said Dr. Azimi. “What is the contribution of these small droplets – is it 5 percent or 90 percent? In this paper, we provide the first real estimates of what this number could be, at least for this cruise ship. “

According to experts, the logic of such a transfer is straightforward. When a person speaks, he emits a cloud of droplets, the vast majority of which are small enough to remain suspended in the air for a few minutes or longer. When inhaled, those small droplet clouds reach the mucosa faster than larger, ballistic ones.


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