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Asymptomatic Transmission Of COVID-19 is Real

Drew Fossen Drew Fossen
29th December 2020
Asymptomatic Transmission Of COVID-19 is Real
Asymptomatic cases do have lower transmission rates (Getty Images).

The Claim

Asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19 does not occur at all.

Emerging story

On December 28, 2020 Jim Hoft tweeted a link with the headline: “Asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19 didn’t occur at all, study of 10 million finds.”

This story originated on LifeSiteNews and was published on December 23rd. Twitter users have reacted to this story, claiming that in light of this news, “social distancing and lockdowns are USELESS.”

Some users feel as if they have been lied to.

Misbar’s Analysis

Misbar’s investigation found this claim to be false. According to the WHO, “Four individual studies from Brunei, Guangzhou China, Taiwan China and the Republic of Korea found that between 0% and 2.2% of people with asymptomatic infection infected anyone else.”

However, there is still much that is unknown about the asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19. Many asymptomatic cases lack symptoms at the time of testing and then later develop symptoms. This is called being presymptomatic.

According to the British Medical Journal (BMJ), studies estimate the transmission rate to be “3-25 times lower for people who are asymptomatic than for those with symptoms.” The reasoning for this is that “the duration of viral RNA shedding (interval between first and last positive PCR result for any sample) is shorter in people who remain asymptomatic, so they are probably less infectious than people who develop symptoms”.

A systematic review of COVID-19 studies shows that: “Symptomatic and presymptomatic transmission have a greater role in the spread of SARS-CoV-2 than truly asymptomatic transmission.” Most studies have agreed on this.

Limiting close contact between infected people and others, whether they are asymptomatic, presymptomatic, or symptomatic, is still the best way to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Misbar’s Classification


Misbar’s Sources

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