Mudcat Café message #4061434 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #167504   Message #4061434
Posted By: Jon Freeman
26-Jun-20 - 01:46 AM
Thread Name: BS: New news on the pandemic COVID-19
Subject: RE: BS: New news on the pandemic
Oh I don't know SRS, although I think I'd opt to wear a mask if going out and it being my decision, things are blurred to me. Fwiw, I' try to copy a bit of what the WHO had as "interim guidance" on 5th June. I'm too tired to try and go back and find the link and don't know if it has been updated since.

First off, I'll try to present one table:

Table 2. Examples of where the general public should be encouraged to use medical and non-medical masks in areas with
known or suspected community transmission
Situations/settings                         Population                                       Purpose of       Type of mask to consider
                                                                                              mask use          wearing if recommended

Areas with known or suspected               General population in public settings, such      Potential         Non-medical mask
widespread transmission and limited or      as grocery stores, at work, social               benefit for
no capacity to implement other             gatherings, mass gatherings, closed             source control
containment measures such as                settings, including schools, churches,
physical distancing, contact tracing,       mosques, etc.
appropriate testing, isolation and care
for suspected and confirmed cases.

Settings with high population density       People living in cramped conditions, and         Potential         Non-medical mask
where physical distancing cannot be         specific settings such as refugee camps,         benefit for
achieved; surveillance and testing          camp-like settings, slums                        source control
capacity, and isolation and quarantine
facilities are limited

Settings where a physical distancing       General public on transportation (e.g., on a    Potential         Non-medical mask
cannot be achieved (close contact)          bus, plane, trains)                              benefit for
                                                                                              source control
                                              Specific working conditions which places
                                              the employee in close contact or potential
                                              close contact with others e.g., social
                                              workers, cashiers, servers

Settings where physical distancing          Vulnerable populations:                         Protection       Medical mask
cannot be achieved and increased risk
of infection and/or negative outcomes           People aged =60 years
                                                  People with underlying comorbidities,
                                                    such as cardiovascular disease or
                                                    diabetes mellitus, chronic lung
                                                    disease, cancer, cerebrovascular
                                                    disease, immunosuppression

Any setting in the community*               Persons with any symptoms suggestive of          Source control    Medical mask
*This applies to any transmission scenario

Now I'll try to give what they see as pros and cons:

Potential benefits/advantages
The likely advantages of the use of masks by healthy people in the general public include:                                                   

reduced potential exposure risk from infected persons before they develop symptoms;                                             
reminding people to be compliant with other measures. However, this can also have the reverse effect (see below);                                                         
potential social and economic benefits. Amidst the global shortage of surgical masks and PPE, encouraging the public to create their own fabric masks may promote individual enterprise and community integration. Moreover, the production of non-medical masks may offer a source of income for those able to manufacture masks within their communities. Fabric masks can also be a form of cultural expression, encouraging public acceptance of protection measures in general. The safe re-use of fabric masks will also reduce costs and waste and contribute to sustainability.                              
Potential harms/disadvantages
The likely disadvantages of the use of mask by healthy people in the general public include:                                    
    potential increased risk of self-contamination due to the manipulation of a face mask and subsequently touching eyes with contaminated hands;(48, 49)
    potential self-contamination that can occur if non-medical masks are not changed when wet or soiled. This can create favourable conditions for microorganism to amplify.
    potential headache and/or breathing difficulties, depending on type of mask used;                                 
    potential development of facial skin lesions, irritant dermatitis or worsening acne, when used frequently for         
    long hours;(50)                                                
    difficulty with communicating clearly;                        
    potential discomfort;(41, 51)                                 
    a false sense of security, leading to potentially lower adherence to other critical preventive measures such as physical distancing and hand hygiene;                           
    poor compliance with mask wearing, in particular by young children;                                                
    waste management issues; improper mask disposal leading to increased litter in public places, risk of contamination to street cleaners and environment hazard;
    difficult communicating for deaf persons who rely on lip reading;
    disadvantages for or difficulty wearing them, especially for children, developmentally challenged persons, those with mental illness, elderly persons with cognitive impairment, those with asthma or chronic respiratory or breathing problems, those who have had facial trauma or recent oral maxillofacial surgery, and those living in hot and humid environments.