SANTA MARIA, Calif. - It’s a new discovery confirmed by the CDC.
COVID-19 can be spread by aerosols.
That means the virus can stay suspended in the air longer than a droplet which falls to the ground.
"It has become more obvious that the virus can apparently also stay suspended in the air for a little while ... not for hours but a little longer than just a droplet," said Dr. Henning Ansorg with the Santa Barbara County Public Health.
Based on this new report, people with COVID-19 can infect others who are more than 6 feet away.
"And then can still be in inhaled by another human and cause an infection making it an airborne infection as opposed to a droplet infection," said Ansorg.
Doctors with the Santa Barbara County Public Health are concerned about people gathering in poorly ventilated and enclosed spaces such as a gym or two church.
“It’s not the most common way how we get it. It is much more common when we were closer to a person inside the 6 feet,” said Ansorg.
Residents with underlying heath conditions are especially concerned.
“It’s very serious I am asthmatic. I also work at the Good Samaritan Shelter so you know I have to be careful full with how I work with clients," said Tyneka Smith of Santa Maria.
While the County Health’s recommendations remain the same, doctors are urging the community to continue taking simple but powerful precautions such as wearing a face mask and keep a at least a 6-feet distance.