May 11, 2020 at 5:12 pm #185898
It would seem that the use of face coverings etc is not mandatory in Wales, recommended in Scotland, Norther Ireland and advisable in England. Usual 4 nation approach !!!
Mark Drakeford said today “It doesn’t protect you the wearer from anybody else, but it may protect other people from the risk of you infecting them”. Does this mean that if we all wore them that it would lower the risk to all?
Obviously with other actions, mainly washing hands it seems a sensible option to make wearing a cloth scarf or similar non medical face covering a compulsory requirement when out and about.
What are peoples thoughts?May 11, 2020 at 5:52 pm #185901
I think it’s pointless because unless done properly then cloth face masks have a chance of increasing spread than curbing it through improper use.
Anyone with facial hair, it will have lower effectiveness – are they going to order everyone to be clean shaven?
As soon as they get wet then they need to be changed, if someone is out for hours breathing into a t-shirt it’s going to get damp with saliva and other airborne droplets quite quickly but it is highly doubtful individuals in question will put that mask away, wash their hands because they’ve touched something that could be contaminated and then put on a completely clean mask. As soon as it gets damp, its effectiveness becomes pointless as it means particles can get through.
Also, cloth masks should only be used once and then binned, so people might take it off and put on a dirty mask again when they go out, which is a contaminated risk. Some people might just put it on a low temperature wash and assume it is safe.
The idea that someone can wear a mask and perceivedly reduce their risk of gaining infection because they’ll get confused over full scale surgical masks vs a random face covering, means they might venture out more and take greater risks and flout social distancing and overall a large number of people doing that is going to push up the R number further than people not wearing facial masks more paranoid and fearful about people coming closer to them and correctly maintaining a social distance and only going out when absolutely necessary.
If people want to wear masks it’s their choice, but it should not be compulsory. It would be baffling to me to order people to wear masks now, 7 weeks into lockdown, because if it did offer any overall safety benefits, surely they should have been compulsory from day one? They had to wear a face covering in Wuhan even before we went into lockdown here, so why didn’t we follow the advice then? What difference is it going to make now?
It’s just a bunch of token gestures to appear to have the illusion that things are under control and they have the safety of the public in mind.May 11, 2020 at 6:15 pm #185903
Your usual concise answer, thanks. I also think you are probably correct but maybe most people understand your points and are willing to wash them correctly, change them often and realise the benefits. The last paragraph has me perplexed is that a generalisation of all 4 nations or just Boris and the Tories. ??May 11, 2020 at 6:22 pm #185905
Big problem with face masks is that they may reduce people’s anxiety levels which is clearly a good thing but also runs the risk of complacency and people forgetting the basics of social distancing – which is a united view point.
There is also an issue over masks being sold that are all but useless as thin as tissue paper that would neither protect the wearer or anyone they came into contact with- products that are washable may end up having a single use as they fall apart when wet.May 11, 2020 at 6:23 pm #185906
Judging by this story from yesterday, I have my doubts that correct mask usage is within the remit of the vast majority of the general public. Hundreds enjoying pizza and beers in the park, flouting social distancing with the added risk of ventilators and death – police onlooking helplessly.
What I meant was UK-wide, if masks could have prevented infection spread, why didn’t it get made compulsory 7 weeks ago? Then proof would be in the pudding if the infection rate was significantly lower now? Just seems a bit late.May 11, 2020 at 6:26 pm #185907
I have always promoted face coverings as Aerial transmission is a one step process, expression and inhilation. Hand Washing prevents a two stage process i.e. aerial or manual deposit followed by someone else manually picking it up before another stage to ingestion. It is ludicrous to promote hand washing in favour of masks. However, the mask and hand washing should prevent both transmission and infection. It must not bee overlooked that many countries now mandate masks for shopping and close contact. For anyone who has been to Hong Kong, they have always wore masks when they have a cold. Hong Kong, in spite of its close proximity to China has had a very low infection rate – Case proved.. WEAR A MASK.May 11, 2020 at 6:48 pm #185910
The masks that are effective and safe in question and work in Hong Kong are not t-shirt coverings. They are more effective surgical masks, which are in short supply over here, they are not the bottom of a t-shirt.
Tsang says the three layers of a surgical mask filter help reduce the risk of contact with droplets, through which the virus is transmitted. “Whenever you foresee to have someone within two to three meters (6.5 to 10 feet) apart, then it’s better to wear a mask,” Tsang adds.May 11, 2020 at 8:10 pm #185919
Has anyone tried going into a Bank or Building Society while wearing a mask yet ?May 12, 2020 at 9:18 am #185934
If you were going into an environment where there were bullets flying and someone offered you a bullet proof vest that may, or may not, work -would you use it ? I bet anyone would take up the offer. Wear a Mask/Covering for everyone’s benefit.May 12, 2020 at 9:38 am #185935
Therein lies the fallacy of your argument, the duff bulletproof vest gives you a false sense of security to remain and operate in the environment with bullets flying around and risk getting harmed – where the sane reaction would be to take cover and hide or leave the unsafe environment immediately due to complete lack of safe options.
So therefore the equivalence there is to stay home rather than risk going out with a t-shirt face mask for the sake of it.
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