"Based on the information received so far and on our experience with other coronaviruses, COVID-19 appears to mostly spread through respiratory droplets (for instance when a sick person coughs) and close contact".
Dr. Benedetta Alleganzi, WHO complex guide for infection avoidance and control, claimed for the duration of a media briefing in Geneva on Tuesday that the company has reviewed and collaborated with numerous scientists who signed the letter saying WHO hasn't been forthright about airborne transmission.
U.S. President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Michael Pompeo have said it might have started in a laboratory in Wuhan, although they've presented no evidence with this and China strongly denies it. Scientists and U.S. intelligence agencies have said it emerged in nature.
The virus has left no country untouched and has impacted virtually everyone alive but the greatest threat humanity faces is not the virus itself but rather "the lack of leadership and solidarity" at both the global and national levels, he said.
However, health experts say the true extent of the virus's spread in India is unknown.
It also provided more details on how the virus can be transmitted through aerosols in the air in certain settings.
India surges to third-highest number of global coronavirus cases
The graph depicts case doubling time in countries with over 2 lakh infections on three dates - May 7, June 7 and July 7. Total number of cases stands at 1,00,823 including 72,088 recovered/discharged/migrated and 25,620 active cases.
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Mr Trump has predicted a " fireworks display like few people have seen" in South Dakota , a state he won in the 2016 USA election. Event organizers were to provide masks to anyone who wanted them and planned to screen attendees for symptoms of COVID-19.
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And what I'm seeing now is anger in the American people over the lockdown, anxiousness about an economic future, and fear of getting the virus.
WHO's stance also recognized the importance of people spreading covid-19 without symptoms, a phenomenon the organization has long downplayed.
"I interpret this as saying while it is reasonable to think it can happen, there's not consistent evidence that it is happening often", Bill Hanage, an epidemiologist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, said in an email. In a change to its previous thinking, World Health Organization noted on Thursday that studies evaluating COVID-19 outbreaks in restaurants, choir practices and fitness classes suggested the virus might have been spread in the air. World Health Organization has repeatedly said "such transmission is rare" despite a growing consensus among scientists globally that asymptomatic spread likely accounts for a significant amount of transmission.
Where it stands: Knowledge about the symptoms and modes of transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is expanding.
Dr Maria Van Kerkhove went on to say that a "comprehensive package of interventions is required to be able to stop transmission". They pointed to the risk of infection not only through large droplets but also smaller particles lingering in stagnant air. If the infection occurs by contact, they are droplets. More than 544,000 lives have been lost.
"Recent clinical reports of health workers exposed to Covid-19 index cases, not in the presence of aerosol-generating procedures, found no nosocomial transmission when contact and droplet precautions were appropriately used, including the wearing of medical masks as a component of the personal protective equipment (PPE)", WHO said.