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Vaccinate NEPA: Can I really get infected with the virus through my eyes?

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EYEWITNESS NEWS (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Eyewitness News asked Dr. Pragya Dhaubhadel, the Director of Infection Prevention and Control for Geisinger Northeast, what the likelihood of getting COVID through your eyes.

A viewer named Grace asks, “From the beginning of the pandemic, we have been told that the virus can enter through the eyes. What’s the likelihood it will enter in this manner?”

“Grace, it is known that COVID-19 is transmitted through every surface, like the lining of the respiratory tract, and the thin lining of the eyes known as respiratory droplets contain COVID-19 virus and if they come in contact with the eyes, transmission is possible, but compared to transmission through respiratory tract, transmission through eyes is less likely, however in health care settings, certain procedures carry high risk for transmission via eyes. That is why CDC recommends eye protection, like goggles, or eye shield, or face shield when we take care of patients, and it is also part of a universal precaution. However, this mode of transmission in the community is less likely,” Dr. Dhaubhadel said.

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