CDC Issues Recommendation on Cloth Face Masks
- Author: T/TAS at WKU
- Author: Tuesday, April 7th, 2020
On April 3, 2020 the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a new recommendation regarding the use of cloth face coverings when in public as an “additional, voluntary public health measure.” The CDC is also informing that the virus may be spread not only by coughing and sneezing, but even by talking in a close distance to someone who is positive for COVID-19.
Per the recommendation:
"We now know from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (“asymptomatic”) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (“pre-symptomatic”) can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms. This means that the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity—for example, speaking, coughing, or sneezing—even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms."
Of note, the recommendation is for cloth coverings and not surgical masks or N95 masks--which are still in high demand by frontline emergency responders/health care professionals.
Also important, the cloth face covering (over the nose and mouth) is not intended for your protection, but instead to prevent the spread of the infection to others, in case you are COVID positive but don't have symptoms/are asymptomatic.
Wearing a cloth face covering does not replace social distancing (6 ft or more), hand washing, etc. The CDC does not recommend face coverings for children under age 2 and persons with other specific considerations. Find more FAQs here.
All details, including a tutorial on making homemade coverings are on the CDC web page at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover.html
If you have questions, feel free to contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org or 800.882.7482
J. Christopher Watkins, Executive Director
Training & Technical Assistance Services (T/TAS)
Western Kentucky University