Health professionals urge people to wear face masks

Health professionals urge people to wear face masks
Health professionals say face masks can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 by at least 50%. (Source: Sarasota Memorial Hospital)

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Health professionals say wearing a face mask can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 by at least 50%.

Sarasota Memorial Hospital’s Infectious Disease Specialist, Dr. Manuel Gordillo, said people should be wearing a mask when they are in close contact with other people, so less than six feet apart. Right now there is no known pharmaceutical prevention and the only proven prevention measure is wearing a face mask. Masks should be worn both indoors and outdoors, but there is a greater risk for people who don’t wear a mask indoors.

”Outdoors there’s a lot more dispersion. There’s other factors, environmental factors that prevent the virus from transmitting the efficiency as it is indoors. So indoors proper mask wear is more strongly recommended than the outdoors. But if you’re outdoors, if you’re going to be at close range to people especially for a long period of time, more than ten minutes, definitely a mask would be recommended,” said Dr. Gordillo.

A person does not need to buy an expensive mask for it to be effective. Cloth masks work just as well. People should make sure the mask covers their nose. When it comes to storing the mask, health professionals say to store it in a dry place. Paper bags are preferred over plastic bags because plastic bags contain more moisture. While Dr. Gordillo said there’s no set time table for how often a person should wash their face mask, if the mask gets contaminated or wet it should be washed.

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