Top Doctor Talks Airborne COVID Transmission and Blood Type Risks
We know you have a lot of questions and concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic, that's why, every Thursday, Dr. Rajeev Fernando is here to answer your COVID-19 questions.
There's been a lot of talk about airborne transmission of the coronavirus recently, as well as if your blood type can increase or decrease your chances of getting the virus. Dr. Rajeev Fernando addressed these issues on this weeks segment.
Connecticut is doing great with COVID-19 cases, but other areas of the country are seeing a record number of cases, what's up with that?
"These are states that, unfortunately, didn't take recommendations, unlike here in the tri-state area, that opened up based on science. Other parts of the country opened quickly and didn't listen to the medical community recommendations".
Maryann in New Fairfield asks what's all this talk about the virus being airborne, hasn't it always been transmitted through the air?
"Yes, it has always been transmitted through the air, but let me break it down. There are three types of transmission, the two well-known and documented ways of transmission are the droplet form, which is when someone coughs or sneezes. The viral particles go as far as about six feet, and then drop to the ground. That's why the six feet rule applies to social distancing. The other, is when you touch something infected, then you touch your mouth or nose. Now we're learning about the third method of transmission, which is called the airborne method. What we're seeing is, remember, we were expecting a lot of cases after the protests, but we just didn't see that, and we're kind of perplexed. What we are conclusively seeing, are people who go to bars or have indoor parties with many people together, these are the places where we are seeing the infection rise. What's really happening, is the people outside get a continuous air exchange which makes it difficult, even if someone has COVID-19, to pick up the infection. Now people indoors, like in the bars, are experiencing one person from point A passing the infection to another person at point Z, and that's what's going on. These are small places with a ventilation system that's not good enough, so in order to take this airborne virus out, you need to have a good ventilation system, or air exchange, where you move the air from inside the room to outside. This is what's used on airplane flights, and we use it in the hospitals. Thinking ahead, if we really want to start schools in the fall, or open up movie theaters, places like this, it's absolutely necessary to have a proper ventilation system. It may be somewhat expensive, but I don't see any other way to make indoor spaces safe. You have your mask wearing, the social distancing, but you really need to have the ventilation systems, the air exchange, this is what will make the difference".
Carly in Wingdale heard that people with certain blood types are not as susceptible to the virus, is there any truth to this?
"That's absolutely true, people with a blood group A tend to have the highest risk of getting COVID-19, and people with blood group O have some sort of protective mechanism against the virus. This is from genetic studies, we're learning more about it, so remember if you're blood group A, you have a higher chance of getting it, and getting a worse case then someone who is in blood group O. We are looking for points all the time to try and correlate, why is this person with type A at a higher risk than the person with type O blood who seems to be a much lower risk?"