Will wearing a mask protect me from COVOID-19?

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) does not recommend face masks for the general public who are well as a protection from COVID-19 or other respiratory diseases. Certain models of professional, tight-fitting respirators — such as N95 respirators, pictured above — can protect healthcare workers while caring for patients with certain infections. Healthcare workers are fit tested for these masks annually and are trained to use them properly.

If people stockpile masks at their homes out of concern, they could inadvertently prevent healthcare facilities from getting the supplies they need for ill patients and the staff treating those patients. Instead, good hand hygiene — washing hands for at least 20 seconds — is very important. Cough etiquette — covering your mouth while you cough or sneeze and then washing hands or using sanitizer — is highly recommended.

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