SEOUL, Aug. 6 (Korea Bizwire) — The infection risk of COVID-19 and other respiratory infectious diseases in an indoor environment is three times higher than outdoors, a recent study revealed.
A joint research team from the Catholic University of Korea Seoul St. Mary’s Hospital and Gyeongsang National University Changwon Hospital conducted a meta-analysis of some 147 research papers on respiratory infectious diseases in an indoor environment published by international journals by December 2020.
Meta-analysis refers to a research method that analyses and assesses a number of research papers on a similar topic.
The route of infection was restricted to air or droplets and set the outdoor environment as standard for comparison.
The study showed that workplaces and schools were 3.94 times more prone to infections than outdoors.
Hospitals (3.23 times), airplanes (3.08 times), residences (2.63 times), and cruises ships/military vessels (2.17 times) were all more prone to infections than outdoors.
Grouping similar types of pathogens, the risk of infections for COVID-19, the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in an indoor environment went up by a factor of 4.44.
They became exceptionally infectious in an indoor environment (5.14 times), due to the ballooning risk of infection that comes about when a certain space is isolated, the research team explained.
Looking at COVID-19 only, the risk of infection jumped by 4.08 times in an indoor environment relatively to outdoors.
Sorted by the type of space, residences posed the highest risk of infection (8.30 times), followed by airplanes (7.30 times).
H. M. Kang (email@example.com)