Coronavirus Disease 2019 and Airborne Transmission: Science Rejected, Lives Lost. Can Society Do Better?

Lidia Morawska*, William Bahnfleth, Philomena M. Bluyssen, Atze Boerstra, Giorgio Buonanno, Stephanie J. Dancer, Andres Floto, Francesco Franchimon, Charles Haworth, Jaap Hogeling, Christina Isaxon, Jose L. Jimenez, Jarek Kurnitski, Yuguo Li, Marcel Loomans, Guy Marks, Linsey C. Marr, Livio Mazzarella, Arsen Krikor Melikov, Shelly MillerDonald K. Milton, William Nazaroff, Peter V. Nielsen, Catherine Noakes, Jordan Peccia, Xavier Querol, Chandra Sekhar, Olli Seppänen, Shin-Ichi Tanabe, Raymond Tellier, Kwok Wai Tham, Pawel Wargocki, Aneta Wierzbicka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debateResearchpeer-review

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This is an account that should be heard of an important struggle: the struggle of a large group of experts who came together at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic to warn the world about the risk of airborne transmission and the consequences of ignoring it. We alerted the World Health Organization (WHO) about the potential significance of the airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and the urgent need to control it, but our concerns were dismissed. Here we describe how this happened and the consequences. We hope that by reporting this story, we can raise awareness of the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration and the need to be open to new evidence, and to prevent it from happening again. Acknowledgement of an issue and the emergence of new evidence related to it, is the first necessary step towards finding effective mitigation solutions.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberciad068
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number10
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Airborne transmission
  • Airborne infection spread
  • Coronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • SARS-CoV-2 virus


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