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US CDC to start collecting wastewater from aeroplanes on international routes to track emerging coronavirus variants

To monitor new coronavirus variations, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may begin collecting wastewater from aeroplanes travelling on international routes.

The approach would efficiently track the coronavirus and limit its entry into the United States, according to experts in infectious diseases. The US implemented new foreign travel regulations earlier this week, including requiring Covid tests for travellers from China.

Travel restrictions, according to Dr. Michael Osterholm, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Minnesota, are ineffective at halting the spread of COVID-19 and are only justified from a political standpoint.

In support of the policy, the US CDC spokesperson Kristen Nordlund wrote in an email, ‘Previous COVID-19 wastewater surveillance has shown to be a valuable tool and aeroplane wastewater surveillance could be an option.’

Last week, Seattle and Los Angeles became a part of the voluntary genomic sequencing, making the number of airports amassing details from positive tests to seven. However, experts say that it may not provide a significant sample size.


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