Will coronavirus die out in warmer weather?

By Sun Chi | | Updated: 2020-03-11 07:30
A worker disinfects the public area at a neighborhood in Beijing on Feb 28, 2020. [Photo by Zou Hong/]

Whether the virus will vanish or not as the temperature goes up is still in doubt. Epidemiologists have cautioned against betting on the weather to halt the outbreak.

On Friday, Michael Ryan, executive director of the WHO Health Emergencies Program, told a daily briefing in Geneva that there is no evidence right now suggesting COVID-19 will disappear in the summer.

"We do not know yet what the activity or behavior of the virus will be in different climatic conditions," said Ryan, warning against the assumption that the virus would just disappear on its own in the summertime like influenza.

Harvard epidemiologist Marc Lipsitch also doesn't assume that changes in weather will make a big difference in how the virus spreads.

"COVID-19 has now been documented around the world. If the virus is anything like a typical flu virus, it may worsen in Southern Hemisphere regions as the seasons change," Lipsitch was quoted as saying in a story published on the National Geographic website.

Wang Peiyu, the deputy director of the Public Health College of Peking University, said that although warmer temperatures disadvantage virus transmission, we should not count on it.

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