Understanding the Modes of Transmission of COVID-19

The novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, has caused a global pandemic and has had a major impact on medical practice. To contain the spread of the virus, it is essential to understand the different modes of transmission. Direct transmission of SARS-CoV-2 occurs through contact with infected secretions, such as saliva and respiratory secretions or their respiratory droplets, which are expelled when an infected person coughs, sneezes, talks or sings. This mode of transmission includes aerosols, anal (fecal-oral) secretions, tears, saliva, semen and mother to child.

Indirect transmission occurs through fomites, which are objects or materials that can carry infectious organisms. This mode of transmission can be underestimated and is at risk of spreading the virus. To reduce person-to-person contact and contain the spread of the virus, it is important to practice social distancing, disinfect everyday objects and practice proper self-hygiene (regular hand washing, proper coughing and sneezing techniques, and wearing masks). Personal protective equipment is also essential for healthcare professionals to reduce the risk of transmission.

As knowledge about SARS-CoV-2 continues to evolve rapidly, more studies are needed to evaluate other possible modes of transmission.

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