SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — You engage in many activities throughout the day. You may need to go out and about, or you could spend a day at home, but what is the risk for COVID-19 while performing these activities?
The Texas Medical Association has released a scale of the risks of day to day activities you could perform during this pandemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the closer you interact with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. The organization also suggests if you venture out to wear a face mask and use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
Dr. Wendell Hoffman is an Infectious Disease Specialist for Sanford Health. He says risk can differ, but the chart is a good resource to use.
“Risk levels for exposure vary based upon four main factors: Enclosed space – So, we know that indoors is much riskier than outdoors in terms of transmission; duration of interaction – so, the longer you’re in close proximity with another individual; the crowds- the density of the people, the higher density the more likely the transmission; and then the whole idea of forceful exhalation – sneezing, yelling, singing and coughing of course are very important factors under any scenario,” Dr. Hoffman said.
He says it’s everyone’s responsibility to make sure you’re practicing social distancing measures, wearing a mask and practicing good hygiene so you lessen the spread of COVID-19.
“There’s no way that you can rank risk in such a detailed manner. It relies upon the public to understand what the nature of this virus is, how it’s transmitted, the asymptomatic nature of it and how we can prevent it,” Dr. Hoffman said.
But there are factors that can contribute to lowering the risk of COVID-19, according to Hoffman.
“Being outside you have the benefit of rapid dissipation of the respiratory particles that are coming out of all of us. They just kind of circulate away from us. In the indoor space, they’re contained. There are data now that show that these both large and small droplet nuclei could hang in the air for minutes to maybe hours,” Dr. Hoffman said.
Dr. Hoffman says it’s important to remember that if nobody is making any effort to try and prevent the spread, your risk significantly increases of catching the virus.
If you’re trying to determine whether to open up your community, workplace or home, an array of specialists have compiled data to help you determine if you should.
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KELOLAND News is covering the COVID-19 pandemic. This is your guide to everything you need to know to prepare. We also have the latest stories from across the globe feeding into this page.
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