To Mask Or Not Mask

To mask or not mask?

Healthcare workers in hospitals and clinics around the country wear masks to avoid infection. Why shouldn’t the general public wear one as well? If COVID-19 is transmitted by dropletss from an infected person’s oral or nasal secretions, it’s common sense that wearing a mask helps provide a barrier between those droplets and your. nose and mouth. Whether you are “healthy” or not, this fact is the same.

David Hui, a respiratory medicine expert at the Chinese University of Hong Kong who studied the 2002 to 2003 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) extensively, says it’s “common sense” that wearing a mask would protect against infectious diseases like COVID-19. “If you are standing in front of someone who is sick, the mask will give some protection,” Hui says. “The mask provides a barrier from respiratory droplets, which is predominantly how the virus spreads.”

It’s pretty clear from statements made by various officials and some in the medical community, this issue is simply that there are not enough masks for everyone so we are being asked to increase our risk to allow healthcare workers access to the limited supply of masks. I don’t want my doctor or anyone on her staff to get this virus.

I have N95 masks from the wildfires that raged through Northern California in the last two years, which were recommended then to avoid breathing in particulates. I’m not taking any masks out of the supply for healthcare workers.

I have serious chronic health problems and a history of Allergic Asthma/COPD after a viral infection several times in the past three years. I’d say this puts me in the “high risk” category. So pardon me if I chose to wear a mask. I’d rather be safe than sorry, or maybe worse.

I wish you all good health
Cathy


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