Last updated March 20, 2020
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A cloth mask is NOT a medical grade mask and it can never replace the protection of N-95 or surgical/procedural masks. The cloth mask is only a stop gap, until the desperately needed and proper PPE is available to ALL health care and frontline workers. This is an emergency response to a desperate and unimaginable problem. The CDC states “HCP use of homemade masks: In settings where facemasks are not available, HCP might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort. However, homemade masks are not considered PPE, since their capability to protect HCP is unknown. Caution should be exercised when considering this option. Homemade masks should ideally be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front (that extends to the chin or below) and sides of the face.”
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