A recently published study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) claims that temperature and latitude have no association with the spread of COVID-19.
Titled “Impact of climate and public health interventions on the COVID-19 pandemic” the study states that closure of schools and other public spaces has helped contain the spread of the disease in different countries rather than the change in temperature and latitude.
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Over the course of the research, Canadian researchers assessed the public health measures in 144 locations around the world. Researchers didn’t include China, Italy, Iran, and South Korea because the spread of the disease was either contained in the case of China or was in full swing at the time of the study.
The researchers examined the influence of temperature, latitude, humidity, school closures, restrictions on mass gatherings, and social distancing measures during the exposure period of March 7 to 13. The researchers then compared the number of cases on March 27 with that on March 20 to determine the transmission of the disease.
Surprisingly, the researchers did not find any link between the transmission of COVID-19 and temperature and latitude. However, they found a weak association between humidity and decreased transmission.
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One of the authors of the study, Dr. Peter Jüni of the Institute for Health Policy, Management, and Evaluation at the University of Toronto has said that hotter weather has no impact on the transmission of the virus.
There is no association between latitude or temperature with the epidemic growth of COVID-19. School closures, social distancing, and restrictions on large gatherings have proven as an effective way to slow down the spread of COVID-19.
Prof. Dionne Gesink, the co-author of the study and an epidemiologist, has said that the results of the study are of immediate relevance as many countries are considering to ease the public health measures enforced to curb the spread of the disease.
Summer is not going to make COVID-19 go away. Governments world over must take into account that these public health interventions are really important because they’re the only thing working right now to slow the epidemic.