As medical-science experts continue to learn as much as they can about the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, some new CDC guidance says that it "does not spread easily" from contaminated surfaces. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention regularly updates its website with details surrounding what doctors know about the virus. A new update states that "the virus spreads easily between people" but "does not spread easily in other ways."
Referring to the chances of contracting COVID-19, the CDC states that "it may be possible" but "this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads." The CDC explains that it is human-to-human spread that is most common and concerning. "How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious, like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, which means it goes from person-to-person without stopping," the department states.
The CDC goes on to say that "the virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading very easily and sustainably between people." Based on the "information from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic" the CDC says there is sufficient evidence to "suggest that this virus is spreading more efficiently than influenza, but not as efficiently as measles, which is highly contagious." Regarding the "person-to-person" spread of coronavirus, the CDC states that it takes place "between people who are in close contact with one another" by way of "respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks."
If the respiratory droplets land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby, or if they are "inhaled into the lungs," this is when someone becomes infected. The CDC adds that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms. Notably, the center also commented on the spread of the virus between animals and humans, which is much more uncertain.
"At this time, the risk of COVID-19 spreading from animals to people is considered to be low," the CDC states. The department adds, however, that "it appears that the virus that causes COVID-19 can spread from people to animals in some situations." The CDC states that it "is aware of a small number of pets worldwide, including cats and dogs, reported to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, mostly after close contact with people with COVID-19." The center also strongly recommends citizens wear face masks in pubic, so as to better help fight against the spread of coronavirus.