Face masks during the COVID-19 pandemic

Sewn multi-layered cloth mask.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, face masks, such as surgical masks and cloth masks, have been employed as a public and personal health control measure against the spread of SARS-CoV-2. In both community and healthcare settings, their use is intended as source control to limit transmission of the virus and personal protection to prevent infection. Their function for source control is emphasized in community settings.

The use of face masks (or coverings in some cases) has been recommended by health professionals and political authorities to reduce the risk of contagion. About 95% of the world's population live in countries that recommend or mandate the use of masks in public during the pandemic.[1]Despite this, only around 63% of people surveyed globally reported wearing a mask, and this figure is likely higher than the actual number, as uncounted rural populations tend not to wear masks.[2]

  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference masks4all was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ https://covid19.healthdata.org/global?view=mask-use&tab=map

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