According to a new study in Singapore, coronavirus patients can no longer be infectious, even while still positive, 11 days after contracting the disease.
Infectious disease experts in Singapore stated that they discovered that the virus “could not be isolated or cultured after day 11 of illness.”
The above findings is contained in a joint paper from the country’s National Center for Infectious Diseases and the Academy of Medicine.
Researchers studied the ‘viral load’ in 73 COVID-19 patients to measure whether the bug was still viable could infect anyone.
The researchers wrote:
Based on the accumulated data since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the infectious period of [coronavirus] in symptomatic individuals may begin around two days before the onset of symptoms, and persists for about 7-10 days after the onset of symptoms.”
Patients may still test positive after a period of two weeks but the fragments of the virus being picked up by the tests are no longer viable for spreading the infection.
“Active viral replication drops quickly after the first week, and viable virus was not found after the second week of illness“, wrote the researchers.
It was suggested by the researchers that the findings could inform hospitals’ decisions about when to discharge patients.
Though the sample size was small, the researchers are confident that their findings will be replicated in larger studies.
NCID executive director Lee Yee-Sin said to Singaporean newspaper, the Strait Times:
Scientifically, I’m very confident that there’s enough evidence that the person is no longer infectious after 11 days.”
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