Health & Fitness News

Medical Workers Should Use Respirator Masks, Not Surgical Masks

A new analysis of 172 studies, funded by the World Health Organization, confirms what scientists have said for months: N95 and other respirator masks are far superior to surgical or cloth masks in protecting essential medical workers against the coronavirus.

The results, published on Monday in The Lancet, make it clear that the W.H.O. and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should recommend that essential workers like nurses and emergency responders wear N95 masks, not just surgical masks, experts said.

“It’s been disappointing that both the W.H.O. and the C.D.C. have suggested that surgical masks are adequate, and they’re clearly not,” said David Michaels, a professor at George Washington University who headed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration under President Obama.

“Reliance on surgical masks has no doubt led to many workers being infected,” he said.

N95 masks offered 96 percent protection, the analysis found, while the figure for

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Pandemic to Cost U.S. Economy $7.9 Trillion Over 10 Years

A new analysis of 172 studies, funded by the World Health Organization, confirmed what scientists have said for months: N95 and other respirator masks are far superior to surgical or cloth masks in protecting essential medical workers against the coronavirus.

The results, published on Monday in The Lancet, make it clear that the W.H.O. and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should recommend that essential workers like nurses and emergency responders wear N95 masks, not just surgical masks, experts said.

“It’s been disappointing that both the W.H.O. and the C.D.C. have suggested that surgical masks are adequate, and they’re clearly not,” said David Michaels, a professor at George Washington University who headed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration under President Barack Obama.

“Reliance on surgical masks has no doubt led to many workers being infected.”

N95 masks

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Will Protests Set Off a Second Viral Wave?

The crowds tended to be on the younger side, he noted, and younger adults generally have better outcomes if they become ill, though there is a risk they could transmit the virus to relatives and household members who may be older and more susceptible.

But others were more concerned about the risk posed by the marches. Dr. Howard Markel, a medical historian who studies pandemics, likened the protest crowds to the bond parades held in American cities like Philadelphia and Detroit in the midst of the 1918 influenza pandemic, which were often followed by spikes in influenza cases.

“Yes, the protests are outside, but they are all really close to each other, and in those cases, being outside doesn’t protect you nearly as much,” Dr. Markel said. “Public gatherings are public gatherings — it doesn’t matter what you’re protesting or cheering. That’s one reason we’re not having large baseball games

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Do Runners Need to Wear Masks?

Jane Rosen began yelling sometime in April. By May, it had become routine. The incidents usually occur near her minivan, which she parks alongside Central Park in New York City.

As she attempts to enter or exit the vehicle, a cyclist or a runner will whiz by, so close she can practically smell them. “I scream, ‘Where is your mask?’” said Ms. Rosen, 73.

Her daughter warned her that these confrontations could end badly. But it feels worth it, she said, because lives are at stake. She’s had about 18 such confrontations. The figure would be higher, she said, if she ventured out more often.

Melissa Mayen, a high school senior in Washington, D.C., had also been avoiding going outside. Then in mid-May, she set out for a ride for the first time in nearly a month.

She was startled when a man, walking across the street, yelled something about

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