CDC Study Says Double Masks Offer More COVID-19 Protection

CDC Study Says Double Masks Offer More COVID-19 Protection

Wearing two masks blocks 92.5 percent of respiratory particles that could carry the coronavirus.

The CDC published a report that states wearing a double mask can dramatically reduce the risk of contracting coronavirus, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report included information pertaining to laboratory experiments that test how effective two three-ply cloth masks are when sprayed with aerosols to mimic a cough. It was discovered that the combination of both masks blocked 92.5 percent of the particles from the simulated cough. On the other hand, a single cloth mask only blocked 44.3 percent of particles.

The double-masking method is strongly recommended due to the new variants of COVID-19 that have been found in the U.S. Although they may be scarce in supply, N95s are still the most prominently suggested masks by health care professionals.

“Masking is one of our most potent means for not only the epidemic and its effects on human health and the economy, but also for slowing viral evolution,” said John Brooks, chief medical officer of the CDC’s COVID-19 response. “We are looking at all the ways we can enhance our prevention measures.”

The agency does not know whether different masking techniques protect from the new strains of the virus in different percentages. The CDC says that one of its main goals is to “convince people to wear a mask at all.” Supplying people with information on how to prevent the spread of the virus as winter continues is another goal.

About the Author

Nikki Johnson-Bolden is an Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety.

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