The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pulled down guidelines warning of the airborne transmission of the coronavirus days after posting it, Politico reports.
The CDC published new guidance on Friday explaining that the virus is airborne.
The new guidelines said the virus primarily spreads through "aerosols, produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, talks, or breathes” and that particles can travel farther than six feet.
The guidance also highlighted the dangers of poorly ventilated areas.
CDC says it was an “error”:
The CDC said on Monday that it published a “draft version” of the guidelines in “error.”
"CDC is currently updating its recommendations regarding airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2," the agency’s website said.
"This was an error on the part of our agency and I apologize on behalf of the CDC," John Brooks, the chief medical officer for the CDC's COVID-19 Emergency Response, told officials on Monday, according to Politico. "We weren't ready to put it up."
The agency’s site now says that close person-to-person contact is the “main mode” of transmission.
Experts have been pushing guidance for months:
The reversal came as the Trump administration tries to crack down on worrisome guidance issued by federal health agencies.
Many health experts have called on the CDC and the World Health Organization to acknowledge that the virus can be transmitted through airborne particles.
The WHO published new guidance in July warning that airborne transmission is possible, particularly in poorly ventilated areas.