Face

You’re Getting Used to Masks. Will You Wear a Face Shield?

The debate over whether Americans should wear face masks to control coronavirus transmission has been settled. Governments and businesses now require or at least recommend them in many public settings. But as parts of the country reopen, some doctors want you to consider another layer of personal protective equipment in your daily life: clear plastic face shields.

“I wear a face shield every time I enter a store or other building,” said Dr. Eli Perencevich. “Sometimes I also wear a cloth mask if required by the store’s policy.”

Dr. Perencevich is an infectious disease physician at the University of Iowa and the Iowa City Veterans Affairs Health Care System. In an opinion article published last month in JAMA, he and two colleagues argued that simple, clear plastic face shields could help reduce the transmission of infections when added to public health measures like increased testing, contact tracing, social distancing

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After Coronavirus, Office Workers Might Face Unexpected Health Threats

When you finally return to work after the lockdown, coronavirus might not be the only illness you need to worry about contracting at the office.

Office buildings once filled with employees emptied out in many cities and states as shelter-in-place orders were issued. These structures, normally in constant use, have been closed off and shut down, and health risks might be accumulating in unseen ways.

“The buildings aren’t designed to be left alone for months,” said Andrew Whelton, an associate professor of civil, environmental and ecological engineering at Purdue University.

Dr. Whelton, other researchers and public health authorities have issued warnings about the plumbing in these buildings, where water may have gone stagnant in the pipes or even in individual taps and toilets. As lockdowns are lifted, bacteria that build up internally may cause health problems for returning workers if the problem is not properly addressed by facilities managers. Employees

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F.D.A. Bans 65 N-95 Style Face Mask Manufacturers

The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday barred more than 65 manufacturers in China from exporting N95-style face masks to the United States, citing poor quality.

In doing so, the F.D.A. slashed the number of Chinese companies approved to sell the masks in the U.S. to 14 from 80.

N95 masks, which provide better protection against coronavirus particles than cloth or surgical masks, are coveted by health care providers and emergency medical workers. On April 3, drastic shortages of the N95 masks led the F.D.A. to allow imports of similar masks from China.

As

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Are Face Masks the New Condoms?

Are face masks going to become like condoms — ubiquitous, sometimes fashionable, promoted with public service announcements? They should be, one virus researcher says, if early indications are correct in suggesting that Covid-19 is often spread by people who feel healthy and show no symptoms.

David O’Connor, who studies viral disease at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said: “If a substantial amount of transmission occurs before people feel sick, how do you stop that? By the time people feel sick and seek care, all the testing and isolation in the world would be too little, too late.”

Dr. O’Connor, who researches H.I.V. and other viruses, including the new coronavirus, said some recent research had shifted his thinking about the current pandemic.

“H.I.V. is also spread while people feel fine,” he wrote in an email, “and consistent, correct condom use is a barrier to sexual virus transmission that works.”

“Face masks are

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