The CDC updated its guidance on Friday to acknowledge that the coronavirus can be transmitted through the air at distances farther than six feet and through"droplets or small particles, such as those in aerosols" like coughs or sneezes.
Why it matters: The update — which was little noticed until a CNN story was published Sunday — comes months after scientists pushed for the agency to acknowledge the disease was transmissible through the air. The CDC previously said that close person-to-person contact was the bigger concern.
- The agency acknowledged that airborne transmission is now thought to be the "main way the virus spreads," adding that proper air ventilation is important.
- "There is growing evidence that droplets and airborne particles can remain suspended in the air and be breathed in by others, and travel distances beyond six feet (for example, during choir practice, in restaurants, or in fitness classes). In general, indoor environments without good ventilation increase this risk," the agency wrote.
Worth noting: The CDC also recently updated its guidance around testing for asymptomatic people after stating in August, against the recommendation of scientists, that asymptomatic people do not need to be tested.
The big picture: A slew of recent reporting suggests deep politicization of the Trump administration's coronavirus response, per Axios' Caitlin Owens.