Health Canada headquarters in Ottawa. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

Health Canada headquarters in Ottawa. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

Health Canada releases guidelines for reducing COVID-19 transmission at home

Improve indoor air quality by opening up your windows and doors, among other encouraged ventilation measures

Canadians can reduce COVID-19 transmission at home by bettering air quality, according to new guidelines released from Health Canada.

The respiratory disease – which has escalated to pandemic levels – is spread through virus particulates suspended in the air.

“Improving indoor air quality is particularly important at this time because Canadians are spending more of their time at home,” the public health agency said.

For this reason, Health Canada recommends promoting natural ventilation during the spring and summer months by opening up windows and doors.

This is especially important “if someone from outside the household is entering the residence.”

READ MORE: Canada updates COVID-19 guidelines to include airborne transmission

Be wary of portable, ceiling fans or single unit air conditioners, the agency said – as they circulate air within a given room but do not exchange air.

“Fans can blow infectious droplets and particles further from their source, which may have contributed to some COVID-19 infections,” the agency said. 

“If the use of a window air conditioner unit or a fan is necessary, aim the air stream to avoid blowing directly at or between people in the room.”

Additionally, the use of high-quality, high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters could prove effective in capturing airborne particles, including some viruses.

If used, portable air cleaners should be run continuously and be positioned to allow unimpeded airflow.

Other Health Canada ventilation considerations include:

  • Use the highest efficiency particulate filter a home’s forced-air system can handle without impeding airflows.
  • Heat recovery ventilation (HRV) and energy recovery ventilation (ERV) appliances should be running continuously and at the highest settings.
  • Avoid ozone-producing air cleaners.
  • Maintain a humidity level between 30 and 50 per cent indoors to help neutralize virus particles.
  • In multi-unit dwellings, ensure plumbing traps remain full at all times to reduce the possibility of cross-contaminants being passed through shared drainage systems.

RELATED: Researchers look at humidity as a weapon in the fight against airborne viruses



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirushomepublic health

Just Posted

Students from Cloverdale Catholic School sit on school grounds while they play music for residents of Bethshan Gardens. So far students from every grade have played for the seniors in a series of music performances. (Photo submitted: Clive Heah)
Students at Cloverdale Catholic School play for residents of Bethshan Gardens

Musical performances have been running since the beginning of May

Fraser Valley Heritage Rail Society volunteers stand on the train platform in Cloverdale in 2020. A new exhibit about FVHRS and Surrey’s train history opens at the Museum of Surrey June 2. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
New exhibition on Surrey’s train history to open at Museum of Surrey

Separate two-day event welcomes kids June 25-26

Shannon Claypool, president of the Cloverdale Rodeo & Exhibition Association, stands outside the Cloverdale Rec. Centre. The rec. centre has been set up as a mass vaccination site by Fraser Health and the Association has decided to cancel the rodeo in order to offer the fairgrounds for public parking. (Submitted)
Second year in a row it’ll be quiet on the Cloverdale Fairgrounds over May Long Weekend

Shannon Claypool says planning for next year is already underway

The City of Surrey partnered with the Work Zone Safety Alliance last year to remind drivers to slow down in construction zones. (File photo)
White Rock, Surrey motorists asked to slow down in ‘cone zones’

Provincewide campaign encouraging residents to be mindful of construction workers

Semiahmoo First Nation archeology manager Don Welsh (left) sifts through shell midden at a Crescent Beach site in August 2019. (File photo)
Semiahmoo First Nation to repatriate 200 ancestors

B.C. grant funding return of remains from Simon Fraser University

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Sicamous RCMP Sgt. Murray McNeil and Cpl. Wade Fisher present seven-year-old Cody Krabbendam of Ranchero with an award for bravery on July 22, 2020. (Contributed)
7-year old Shuswap boy receives medal of bravery for rescuing child at beach

Last summer Cody Krabbendam jumped into the lake to save another boy from drowning

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the province’s COVID-19 vaccine program, May 10, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays below 500 a day over weekend

14 more deaths, down to 350 in hospital as of Monday

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Royal Bay Secondary School’s rainbow crosswalk was vandalized shortly after being painted but by Monday, coincidentally the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, the crosswalk had been cleaned up and students had surrounded it with chalk messages of support and celebration. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C. high’s school’s pride crosswalk restored following ‘hateful’ graffiti attack

Hate terms, racial slur, phallic images spray-painted at Greater Victoria high school

Terrance Mack would have celebrated his 34th birthday on May 13, 2021. Mack’s family has identified him as the victim of a homicide in an apartment on Third Avenue in Port Alberni sometime in April. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Family identifies Ucluelet man as victim of Vancouver Island homicide

Terrance Mack being remembered as ‘kind, gentle’ man

Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen (18) and Calgary Flames’ Josh Leivo, front right, vie for the puck as goalie Jacob Markstrom, back left, watches during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Saturday, February 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver Canucks forward Jake Virtanen sued over alleged sexual assault

Statement of claim says the woman, identified only by her initials, suffered physical and emotional damages

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Most Read