Mary Rose Corkery on January 28, 2021
Epidemiologist Michael Osterholm of the University of Minnesota said Thursday that wearing two masks “may actually be counterproductive.”
Osterholm told Chuck Todd on “Meet The Press Daily” that officials should’ve distributed “the highly efficient and effective kinds of respiratory protection, namely these N95 masks or respirators” earlier and urged caution over wearing two masks.
“That may actually be counterproductive, not helpful,” Osterholm told Todd. “We know and I’m not an aerial biologist but we know in fact they may impede the movement of air in and out causing it to actually escape in the big crevices between the cloth and your face. That’s a bigger problem, not a lesser problem than one,” Osterholm told Todd.
“That’s the reason why you see people either double masking or doing a version of an N95,” Fauci said, according to CNBC.
Osterholm said Americans wearing only KN5 and N95 masks isn’t feasible yet, and officials are focused on is encouraging people to “wear something” at all.
Osterholm said the virus will spread even more if people aren’t wearing two masks correctly. Osterholm said thick cloth can prevent airflow and urged for people to wait for sufficient data to back two-mask recommendations.
“Remember the way a mask works, it’s fit and filtered. Meaning in a swim goggle, or a swim mask, how often do you see a leak in the lens. It doesn’t leak there, it leaks in the seal around it,” Osterholm said.
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