ATLANTA (WYMT) - New guidance recently released on the Centers for Disease Control's website shows a common belief about how the novel coronavirus spreads may be changing as we learn more about the virus.
“All viruses react differently to surfaces, to sunlight, to different sanitizers and different things," said Kentucky River District Health Department Public Health Director Scott Lockard.
In a recent update to the organization's "How COVID-19 spreads" section on its website, officials say they now believe that the virus doesn't spread as easily on surfaces or objects, but it still could be possible.
“This is not a green light to go ahead and touch everything and then touch your mouth or nose and eyes again," said Dr. Fares Khater, chief of infectious disease at ARH and MCHC.
Before, researchers originally thought the virus could live on some surfaces for up to three days.
“We’re just seeing that there’s not nearly as many cases that are being transmitted from that surface to person contact. It is primarily person to person," said Lockard.
Lockard says this does not mean cleaning should not still be a part of someone's usual routine.
“We may not have to do as much cleaning but we still have to do basic cleaning all the time," said Lockard.
He wants people to still focus on the main mode of transmission which is prolonged human contact.
“When individuals are coughing they’re sneezing even talking we expel droplets when we’re doing this hence the importance of masks," said Lockard.
In a recent email interview with Fox News, Dr. John Whyte, the chief medical officer for the healthcare website WebMD, called the CDC’s changes an “important step in clarifying how the virus is spread, especially as we gain new information," and that “It also may help reduce anxiety and stress. Many people were concerned that by simply touching an object they may get coronavirus and that’s simply not the case.
There were no changes to the guidelines about how practicing good hygiene and social distancing help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The update also maintains that the spread is also low between animals and people and vice versa.