CDC on Civilian Face Masks/Cloth Face Coverings
As of April 9, 2020, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published, "Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19" as a public service announcement (PSA) to ensure safety from and prevention of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
CDC recommends wearing civilian face masks or simple cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures in essential businesses, such as, supermarkets, grocery stores, and pharmacies are difficult to maintain, especially in areas of significant community-based transmission, such as New York and California.
This advisory is in place to help slow the spread of the virus and people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
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How to Wear Fabric Face Masks/Cotton Face Masks
CDC advocates that fabric face masks or cotton face masks should: "fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face, be secured with ties or ear loops, include multiple layers of fabric, allow for breathing without restriction, and be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape."
How to Safely Remove Used Fabric Face Masks/Protective Face Masks
CDC instructs everyone to be careful to avoid touching the eyes, nose, and mouth when removing used protective face masks.
Then CDC emphasizes the importance of washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds immediately afterwards.
If soap and water are not readily available however, CDC approves the use of any hand sanitizer that is composed of at least 60% alcohol to clean hands. The proper way to do so would be to cover all surfaces of the hands and rub them together until they feel completely dry.
How to Safely Sterilize/Clean & Wash Reusable Face Masks/Washable Face Masks
CDC states that it is sufficient for reusable face masks to be routinely and properly washed depending on the frequency of use, with a washing machine.
Similarly, we urge washing our washable face masks before first and after each use through machine wash hot and tumble dry afterwards.
"How to Protect Yourself & Others." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 13 Apr. 2020, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.
"Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 13 Apr. 2020, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html.