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

Local hiker Kara Ruff captured this double rainbow hiking Ripple Rock near Campbell River on June 15. Photo courtesy Kara Ruff.
Local hiker captures double rainbow

Double rainbow photographed from Ripple Rock trail viewpoint

BC Ferries’ newest Island Class vessel is experiencing an issue with one of its thrusters off the Algerian coast. Photo courtesy patbaywebcam.com.
BC Ferries newest vessel having mechanical issues in Mediterranean

Island 4 will be repaired in Spain before crossing Atlantic

A Photo from Sept. 2020, when First Nations and wild salmon advocates took to the streets in Campbell River to protest against open-pen fish farms in B.C.’s waters. On Dec. 17, federal fisheries minister Bernadette Jordan announced her decision to phase out 19 fish farms from Discovery Islands. Cermaq’s application to extend leases and transfer smolts was denied. (Marc Kitteringham/Campbell River Mirror)
Discovery Island fish farms not allowed to restock

Transfer of 1.5 million juvenile salmon, licence extension denied

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

The Co-op gas station at Whiskey Creek is burning after a camper van exploded while refueling just before 4 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (FACEBOOK PHOTO)
Exploding camper van torches Highway 4 gas station between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni

Highway traffic blocked after Whiskey Creek gas station erupts into flames

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

Greater father involvement in the home leads to improved childhood development and increased marital satisfaction, says expert. (Black Press Media file photo)
Vancouver Island researcher finds lack of father involvement a drag on gender equality

Working women still taking on most child and household duties in Canada: UVic professor

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

Most Read