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COVID-19: Asymptomatic transmission very rare – WHO

By Oluwaseun Sonde

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The World Health Organization WHO has explained that there are two distinct kinds of silent transmission, Asymptomatic (spreading a disease when you don’t have symptoms) and Presymptomatic (spreading it before symptoms start), both are difficult to stop while asymptomatic transmission very rare in the case COVID-19.

The Technical lead Covid-19 response for WHO, Dr Van Kerkhove disclosed this recently while misunderstood on comment she made in an interview on Newsmax live TV over asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 not infectious as she said studies shown that it is rare for asymptomatic cases to infect secondary individuals.

According to her, “in few studies that I have been able to follow infected people who never get symptoms, to track down every person they’ve been in contact with and monitor those people for infection, transmission appeared to be “very rare.” It’s been difficult for researchers to document asymptomatic transmission. By their very nature, these cases fly under the radar of doctors because patients don’t show signs of being sick.

“Most studies have found cases in very specific situations where asymptomatic patients have been discovered as part of an investigation of a group of related cases. An example, Passengers who are on the same airline flight or cruise, or family members living in the same house”, She said.

She added that for the most part, people who are asymptomatically infected have been younger, without any other health issues. “WHO briefings suggest that between 6% and 41% of people who test positive for the virus will be asymptomatic, less is known about what proportion of these people go on to infect others.

“The true about asymptomatic transmission might be uncommon, what’s likely to be more common is presymptomatic transmission. Presymptomatic transmission occurs with the flu. Studies have shown that people with COVID-19 can infect others anywhere from 1 to 3 days before they get sick, she said.<


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