“Risk of transmission 3 times higher in the workplace than a navy vessel”
The risks of transmitting infectious respiratory diseases could be up to three times higher in confined spaces than in open spaces, according to a local study.
The research duo – Moon Jin-young, senior author as medical resident in the Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at St. Mary’s Hospital in Seoul, and Ryu Byung-han, corresponding author as that professor of internal medicine at Gyeongsang Changwon Hospital National University – analyzed 147 articles published up to December 2020 concerning the risks of transmission of respiratory infectious diseases.
The researchers found that the risk of transmission in all types of confined spaces was about three times greater than in open spaces. Specifically, the relative risk of infection was 3.94 times higher in the workplace or school, 3.23 times higher in hospitals, 3.08 times higher in airplanes, 2.63 times higher in residential spaces and 2.17 times higher in passenger ships or navy vessels.
By type of pathogen, the MERS virus (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) caused the highest risk of transmission indoors with a 12.58 times higher risk, followed by Bordetella pertussis. This pathogen causes whooping cough, with a 7.08 times higher risk.
Mumps virus was next with 4.84 times higher risk, Covid-19 virus with 4.08 times higher risk, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) virus with 2.86 times higher risk high, tuberculosis with a 2.71 times higher risk and influenza, a 2.2 times higher risk.
The researchers grouped together similar pathogens to more precisely analyze the risk of transmission in indoor spaces.
The risk of infection in residential spaces was highest at 5.14 times, followed by hospitals at 4.19 times, in contrast to the fact that the risk of transmission of all pathogens was highest at the site. work or school.
This indicates that if the state’s quarantine measures lock down one specific type of space, the risk of infection could increase in other types of areas, the researchers said.
In the TB group, workplace or school had the highest risk of transmission with a 3.88 times higher risk, followed by planes with a 3.77 times higher risk, hospitals with a risk 2 , 96 times higher and residential spaces with a 2.19 times higher risk.
A separate scan for the Covid-19 virus showed a 4.08 times higher risk in confined spaces than in open spaces.
By type of space, residential spaces were the most risky with an 8.3 times higher risk, and airplanes had a 7.30 times higher risk.
In contrast, navy ships and hospitals were at low risk of transmission, with a 1.8-fold and 1.78-fold risk, respectively.
“This study is the first to quantitatively analyze the risk of transmission of Covid-19 by droplets and air in different types of space. In addition, this is significant as the study systematically analyzed the risk of transmission by all respiratory pathogens in confined spaces, ”Moon said.
Health authorities should particularly consider the possibility of the “balloon effect”, where a lockdown of one space leads to a concentration of people in another area, he noted.
The study will be published in the November issue of Environmental Research, and the online version was published on July 12.