Respiratory diseases specialist at Vichaiyut Hospital, Dr. Manoon Leechawengwongs posted to his personal Facebook page that the Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus has further intensified the spread of the disease as it is 1,000 times more intrusive in a person’s perspiration than its predecessor.
He further pointed out that the latest wave of infections in Thailand has mostly been within households, diluting the effectiveness of lockdowns.
The doctor recommended people wear protective masks in the home the same as they would outside, especially those who regularly leave their homes for work or to buy necessities. He further stated these individuals should immediately wash their hands with soap or alcohol when arriving back home and then continue to keep their masks on for the safety for their families.
Dr. Manoon referenced a study conducted by a Boston area hospital between September 2020 and April 2021. The paper indicated that the 803-bed hospital served 11,290 patients in double rooms, which made up 28 percent of its rooms. While all of the patients were vetted for COVID-19, up to 25 tested positive after being in the facility for three days. Of 31 patients sharing a room with an infected individual, 12, or 39 percent, contracted the virus.
Beds were about two meters apart and separated by a curtain. Patients did not come into contact with one another but shared a bathroom. They were not required to wear masks while sleeping. The study surmised that COVID-19 can be contracted through the air and is transmitted through breathing.
The doctor remarked that the Delta variant wasn’t present during the study and would likely have increased the infection rate beyond 39 percent, had it been. He reasoned that the findings should prompt people to wear a mask even when at home. (NNT)