The cloth face masks we wear daily when in the presence of others are to protect them from us, in case we have coronavirus with no symptoms. The masks must fit snugly (if there’s a small metal nose piece inside the mask, you can press it to fit the shape of your face). The masks should be made with multiple layers of cotton fabric and can have either elastic or fabric ties to secure them in place. Masks must cover both the nose and mouth, and must be washed after each use. Normal washing machine settings work fine.
Cloth face coverings should not be placed on children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Surgical masks and N95 masks are best saved for healthcare providers, since they are in short supply. Thank you to the many residents who crafted and donated so many beautiful cloth masks!
We never know who might have the virus – even ourselves – so everyone should wear a mask to protect each other. Please wear your mask and be a good neighbor even if one of your neighbors does not wear one. Not wearing a mask puts others around you at risk. You could save someone’s life by wearing your mask.
This does not replace social distancing – please continue to space yourself at least 6 feet away from others. Remind those around you to wear a mask to protect YOU!
Right now we’re encouraging everyone to wear masks when in the presence of other people. This is not going to end soon, so be sure to keep a good supply on hand. Emergency Departments have found that they have had many fewer seasonal influenza cases this year, likely due to people wearing masks and social distancing. This is a habit that will come in handy NEXT flu season – masks protect against all airborne illnesses, so we haven’t seen the last of masks even when the coronavirus pandemic has declined.
Wear your mask anytime you will encounter someone: while walking outside, when you go to a store, when you have a medical appointment, when a repairman comes to your home – EVERY TIME you encounter someone that doesn’t live in your household.
To remove your mask, grasp the elastic or fabric ties and fold the mask into itself as you remove it from your face. Do not touch the inside of the mask. Immediately put it in the laundry basket (don’t leave it lying around). Don’t reuse a mask until it has been washed at the highest setting advised for the fabric.
After removing your mask, wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap for 20 seconds (two rounds of Happy Birthday).
If you have any questions about masks or other Personal Protective Equipment (such as gloves, goggles, or gowns), please call Marla at x7564 or email at [email protected].
Marla LeFevre, RN
Director of Health Services
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