DIY masks

Winston

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Wearing one does the following:

1. Greatly reduces the particles a sick person can spread - note that there is asymptomatic spread
2. Prevents you from touching your mouth and nose, by far the most common way we can get infected
3. Substantially increases your odds of having a mild case, should you get infected


How to make your own mask [just one type from a T-shirt - more choices on web site]
30 Mar 2020

We now have a website - www.Masks4All.co . We've compiled research, expert voices, and DIY recipes, all in one regularly updated place.

Wear a homemade mask to stop the spread of Coronavirus.

The scientific evidence is overwhelming that we can reduce virus transmission if we all wear masks in public. Please protect yourself and others by wearing a mask and demanding that others do the same.

We've analyzed ~40 scientific papers, and they indicate that basic masks can be effective in reducing virus transmission in public. Not a single paper that shows clear evidence that they cannot. Hospitals running short of N95-rated masks are turning to homemade cloth masks themselves.

Most countries who have Coronavirus under control have widespread mask usage. Hong Kong, Mongolia, South Korea and Taiwan, have covid-19 largely under control. They are all near the original epicenter of the pandemic in mainland China, and they have economic ties to China. Yet none has resorted to a lockdown.

Many authorities still advise only people with symptoms to wear masks. But this doesn’t help with a disease like covid-19, since a person who does not yet show symptoms can still be contagious. If we all wear masks, people unknowingly infected with the coronavirus would be less likely to spread it.

You can help change your country's norms and make mask safety mainstream. Wearing a mask [in the Czech Republic] is now considered a prosocial behavior. Going outside without one is frowned on as an antisocial action that puts your community at risk. In fact, the community reaction has been so strong that the government has responded by making it illegal to go out in public without a mask.




The Czech design shown in the video:

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How We'll Beat The Coronavirus: EVERYONE Should Wear A Mask
2 Apr 2020



COVID-19: Fighting a Pandemic NHK (Japan) Documentary
27 Mar 2020

Watch from 28:25. At 31:16, microdroplets from just loud talking shown, not from coughing or sneezing. Later segments discuss potential drugs and the highly successful measures taken in Taiwan (population 23.8 million - everyone wearing masks) without shutting down the entire country or schools (starts at 55:50). Masks: 3 per week for adults, 5 for children. However, crazy TP buying panic there also.



APRIL 1, 2020
More evidence indicates healthy people can spread virus

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-04-healthy-looking-people-coronavirus.html

Scientists offered more evidence Wednesday that the coronavirus is spread by seemingly healthy people who show no clear symptoms, and the federal government issued new guidance warning that anyone exposed to the disease can be considered a carrier.

A study by researchers in Singapore became the latest to estimate that somewhere around 10% of new infections may be sparked by people who carry the virus but have not yet suffered its flu-like symptoms.
The newest research was published online by the CDC. It focused on 243 cases of coronavirus reported in Singapore from mid-January through mid-March, including 157 infections among people who had not traveled recently. Scientists found that so-called pre-symptomatic people triggered infections in seven different clusters of disease, accounting for about 6% of the locally acquired cases.

One of those infections was particularly striking. A 52-year-old woman's infection was linked to her sitting in a seat at a church that had been occupied earlier in the day by two tourists who showed no symptoms but later fell ill, investigators said after they reviewed closed-circuit camera recordings of church services.

An earlier study that focused on China, where the virus was first identified, suggested that more than 10% of transmissions were from people who were infected but did not yet feel sick.

The seemingly healthy people who can transmit the virus are believed to fall into three categories: pre-symptomatic, who do not have symptoms when they spread but develop illness a couple of days later; asymptomatic, who never develop symptoms; and post-symptomatic, who get sick and recover but remain contagious. The Singapore and China studies focused on pre-symptomatic infections.


APRIL 1, 2020
MIT researcher says droplets carrying coronavirus can travel up to 8 meters

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-04-meters-social-distancing-mit-droplets.html

Lydia Bourouiba, an associate professor at MIT, has researched the dynamics of exhalations (coughs and sneezes, for instance) for years at The Fluid Dynamics of Disease Transmission Laboratory and found exhalations cause gaseous clouds that can travel up to 27 feet (8.2 meters).

Her research could have implications for the global COVID-19 pandemic, though measures called for by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization call for six and three feet (0.9 m and 1.8 m) of space, respectively.

"There's an urgency in revising the guidelines currently being given by the WHO and the CDC on the needs for protective equipment, particularly for the frontline health care workers," Bourouiba told U.S. TODAY.


Texas Town Fines Residents for Not Wearing Masks in Public Amid COVID-19 Outbreak
In addition to regular masks, the town is telling residents to use homemade masks, scarfs, bandanas or handkerchiefs to help halt the spread of coronavirus.
April 2, 2020

https://www.usnews.com/news/nationa...ing-masks-in-public-amid-coronavirus-outbreak

FDA SAYS PPE CAN BE REUSED AFTER TRIP THROUGH SHIPPING CONTAINER DECONTAMINATION SYSTEM [hope for medical personnel and first responders]
2 Apr 2020

https://hackaday.com/2020/04/02/fda...gh-shipping-container-decontamination-system/

This is the promise of Battelle’s Critical Care Decontamination System, a shipping-container-sized unit which has received approval from the FDA at break-neck speed.

HYDROGEN PEROXIDE: IT’S NOT JUST FOR ROCKETS

Each container houses a main chamber into which the infected PPE is loaded protected by an airlock and a set of filters, and the decontamination magic happens courtesy of several hours’ exposure to hydrogen peroxide vapour. The mechanism of using hydrogen peroxide as a disinfectant is simple and well-understood, it’s a chemical that readily degrades into highly reactive hydroxyl radicals which in turn attack any organic material they encounter. This effectively neutralises any viruses or bacteria that may be present on the PPE, leaving it clean and disinfected for its next user, and with the whole cycle from start to finish including loading and unloading taking twelve hours. The particularly flexible aspect of the system comes in its shipping container home, making it very straightforward to move from place to place where it is needed using standard trucks and loading equipment.


Manufacturer's details:

https://www.battelle.org/inb/battelle-critical-care-decontamination-system-for-covid19

battelle-heath-care-decontamination-system-featured.jpg


Texas Town Fines Residents for Not Wearing Masks in Public Amid COVID-19 Outbreak
In addition to regular masks, the town is telling residents to use homemade masks, scarfs, bandanas or handkerchiefs to help halt the spread of coronavirus.
2 Apr 2020

https://www.usnews.com/news/nationa...ing-masks-in-public-amid-coronavirus-outbreak
 

Speaknoevil

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In testing common materials like T-shirts, sweatshirts, towels, scarves, along with retail cloth masks, a Hanes sweatshirt is your best bet. Saying that, none of them really worked compared to an N95 mask which is what Chuck has been saying all along. So you really are just protecting others from your sneezing and coughing, but then why would you be outside if you are that sick already?
https://academic.oup.com/annweh/article/54/7/789/202744
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High Desert Rocketry

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Two of the types we've been making for people, one with tie strings and one with elastic.

As mentioned, lots of different DIY on you tube...thank you Winston for this link:

https://masks4all.co/
 

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BBowmaster

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In testing common materials like T-shirts, sweatshirts, towels, scarves, along with retail cloth masks, a Hanes sweatshirt is your best bet. Saying that, none of them really worked compared to an N95 mask which is what Chuck has been saying all along. So you really are just protecting others from your sneezing and coughing, but then why would you be outside if you are that sick already?
https://academic.oup.com/annweh/article/54/7/789/202744
View attachment 411494
Wow. So homemade cloth masks, which some places are requiring you wear, are almost useless? We don’t need more theater, we need real direction.
 

neil_w

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So you really are just protecting others from your sneezing and coughing, but then why would you be outside if you are that sick already?
Asymptomatic carriers can also sneeze and cough (allergy season is ramping up).

Wow. So homemade cloth masks, which some places are requiring you wear, are almost useless? We don’t need more theater, we need real direction.
There is a lot of conflicting information out there regarding masks.

From what I gather, while it is certainly preferable to have a mask with better materials, even poorer materials will *reduce* how far the water droplets and/or aerosols project from the wearer's mouth, which should help reduce spread.

But it's definitely clear that simply saying "wear a mask" doesn't solve anything without a lot more detailed instructions. I'm hoping those will be forthcoming. I've read a lot and still have a ton of questions.
 

ebruce1361

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My two cents:

I work in a calibration laboratory, and my primary duty is working on n95 mask fit testers like the TSI 8038 Portacount. (See Here) Now, I don't actually work with the masks themselves, but rather the fit testers, but I can say that a lot of the disposable masks as well as the disposable cleanroom suits are made with polypropylene fabric. This is a pressed, not woven fabric and is much better at snagging 0.1 micron particles and larger, including the virus microbes even without a surrounding water droplet. Imagine smashing a bunch of razor barbed wire into a flat sheet with a steamroller to create a fence, then try to throw a hamster through that fence versus a chain link fence.

Now, here's the fun part: that polypropylene fabric is the same flimsy, dimpled stuff that reusable grocery bags are made of. Over the weekend, I made two masks out of two layers of said grocery bag material and a layer of plain t-shirt fabric on the outside and inside. Breathing through them is easy enough, but I think I need to use something besides t-shirts because the spandex makes it not want to cooperate in my sewing machine. Once I settle on a fabric combination I like, I'll take a couple of the masks to work and run them through the paces with the fit tester and see just how good they are.
 

ebruce1361

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What if you lined the inside of a cloth mask with a piece of this? https://filterbuy.com/air-filters/20x20x1/merv-13/ You know, flatten it out, maybe use a fabric adhesive to seal around the inside edges?

Intriguing! I might just have to grab one from Lowe's on my way home. If it works, this would have the added benefit of having some flexible metal that can be added to the nose section so the wearer can conform it to their face (which is one of the biggest problems with the home-made masks: air getting in around the nose and not passing through the mask). Personally, I would rather sew the mask than use fabric adhesive for the sake of durability, but that might just work in a pinch. I'm curious though how well it would hold up if the mask were tossed in the laundry because even if these masks are effective at catching the virus microbes, they are then in/on the mask and can possibly become dislodged and infect the wearer once the mask is removed. I've heard some hospitals have had success sterilizing and re-using disposable masks with hydrogen peroxide sprays, and I can imagine alcohol would also work.
 

neil_w

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Many mask designs I have seen include an embedded piece of filter material. I assume those merv-13 filters would work.

The problem is really what ebruce1361 says above: cleaning and maintenance. The designs I have seen have the filter completely sewn in and non-replaceable... I can't imagine that it would continue to be as effective after a washing. Or do you discard the filter after each use? I don't know. That would only work if the mask was designed to allow for it.
 

ebruce1361

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Thus far, the two I made using the polypropylene fabric are sewn with all four layers together, and are therefore not able to have the filter material removable. My thought with them was to have the masks washable and/or soaked in disinfectant. Even so, it is possible that the filter material would come apart and disintegrate if washed. I'll have to throw one in the next few loads of laundry to see what kind of damage there is when washed. If the filters do degrade, I might have to modify my design to include an opening of some kind to remove and swap filters. That adds a level of complexity that makes my design less ideal for donations since there will have to be a pack of replacement filters with each mask, plus that leaves an edge around the whole mask where particles can enter around the filter.

More study and modifications are necessary on my end.
 

Speaknoevil

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My thought was that you would just remove the filter piece and throw it away, wash the mask itself and then put on another filter piece. One filter would probably give you 20 or 30 masks worth once they are flattened out. The easy removal of the filter piece was why I was saying I'd try fabric adhesive. With just a bit of effort, it pulls apart. It is a bit like rubber cement, so it may even give you a seal around the edge against your skin.
 

boatgeek

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The Deaconess pattern for rectangular pleated masks has an opening for a replaceable filter. However, having made and worn one without an added filter, it doesn't fit tightly enough to really seal. A lot of air comes around the mask. I expect that would be the same or worse with a filter.

The fitted mask here is a much tighter fitting mask that also has openings for replaceable filters. I haven't worn one enough to know whether it actually seals well or not, though you'll want a heavier wire than pipe cleaner to get a good seal around the nose.This pattern is about 3x the labor of the Deaconess pattern.

Another way to look at the charts comparing materials above is that the mask might provide 20% protection to the wearer, which is better than zero but not as good as real filtration. Personally, I'll take 20% if I can get it.
 

ebruce1361

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Another way to look at the charts comparing materials above is that the mask might provide 20% protection to the wearer, which is better than zero but not as good as real filtration. Personally, I'll take 20% if I can get it.

Agreed, and that's the problem I keep running into when talking to people about these masks. It seems a lot of folks are pointing at the faults of these mask designs and saying they are garbage because they aren't n95 rated. A bandanna wrapped around my face isn't much protection, but it's better than no mask at all. If it's hailing outside, a suit of armor is ideal, but I'll take a t-shirt and shorts over nothing.
 

BBowmaster

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I suppose 20% is still worth doing. I think that people should be TOLD that it’s only 20% effective when it’s suggested else you have people out and about with a false sense of security which WILL increase transmission rates.

I also have a problem with the government requiring me to use something without it being available. Imagine seatbelt laws if cars commonly came without seatbelts. Related to that; how are we supposed to keep track of what is allowed and what not? Not everyone has access to tv news or the internet. Nor is there a law I know of requiring me to watch it.
 

boatgeek

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I suppose 20% is still worth doing. I think that people should be TOLD that it’s only 20% effective when it’s suggested else you have people out and about with a false sense of security which WILL increase transmission rates.

I also have a problem with the government requiring me to use something without it being available. Imagine seatbelt laws if cars commonly came without seatbelts. Related to that; how are we supposed to keep track of what is allowed and what not? Not everyone has access to tv news or the internet. Nor is there a law I know of requiring me to watch it.

I think that first part was why CDC originally opposed recommending masks in the first place. This is new enough that I haven't been able to tell if people are (a) wearing the masks and (b) doing stupid stuff that they didn't otherwise.

On the second point, the masks aren't required right now, only recommended. For other social infractions, I think the cops are generally in "educate first" mode before they issue tickets. On the other hand, if you're in NYC and haven't figured it out, you might get the hammer on the first offense.
 

neil_w

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Another way to look at the charts comparing materials above is that the mask might provide 20% protection to the wearer, which is better than zero but not as good as real filtration. Personally, I'll take 20% if I can get it.
I suppose 20% is still worth doing. I think that people should be TOLD that it’s only 20% effective when it’s suggested else you have people out and about with a false sense of security which WILL increase transmission rates.
Unless you're fully gearing up, you wear the mask primarily to protect other people, not the other way around. The main objective is to reduce spread from asymptomatic carriers.

Certainly, wearing a partially effective home-made mask should not give *anyone* any sense of confidence about anything. It's merely a percentage contribution to the collective cause: the more people that wear them, the less overall spread of the virus. That however is highly valuable in the aggregate.
 

ebruce1361

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Certainly, wearing a partially effective home-made mask should not give *anyone* any sense of confidence about anything. It's merely a percentage contribution to the collective cause: the more people that wear them, the less overall spread of the virus. That however is highly valuable in the aggregate.

Agreed. I'd much rather have 90% of people in public places wearing masks with 20% effectiveness than the other way around. It's by no means ideal, but it will slow the spread of this virus enough for the medial community to catch up and be able to concentrate on getting the vaccines ready.

Anyway, for those who may be interested, my initial mask made from the grocery bag polypropylene survived two consecutive runs through the laundry last night. I think I will subject it to two more washes and then cut it open to see what damage if any there is to the filter material, but at this time it appears to be holding up just fine, especially since they are sandwiched between two layers of t-shirt fabric.
 

georgegassaway

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If EVERYBODY wears masks, they are helping to prevent the spread, more for others than themselves (they help some to keep you from catching it, they help a lot more to keep you from spreading it if you have it and do not know it).

If a person goes out not wearing one because they don't think it'll protect them enough from catching it, to heck with protecting others because they think the world revolves around them, then that's a huge middle finger to everybody else who is trying to protect everybody including that person.

Czech Republic really jumped hard to try to control this. Masks required in public.



I ordered some from eBay that will hopefully arrive soon. And at work today, HR made up masks from store T-Shirts. Been wearing one all day at work. Taking it home each night to wash it.

Of course many who are wearing masks do not realize the masks do more to protect others than to protect themselves (at work today, a guest coughed as they left. Fortunately they were wearing a mask, and were mostly out the door). Whatever reasons, wear them when out in public.
 
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neil_w

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I ordered some from eBay that will hopefully arrive soon. And at work today, HR made up masks from store T-Shirts. Been wearing one all day at work. Taking it home each night to wash it.
How do you work around lunch, and the general need to at least *occasionally* get to your nose or mouth? One rule of masks it that you're not supposed to touch them, at least not until you take them off and dump them straight into the laundry. I don't see how that squares with sitting at work for 8-ish hours.

They just instituted a masks-required rule at our office, for those who *must* come in, but didn't go into all the details.
 

georgegassaway

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How do you work around lunch, and the general need to at least *occasionally* get to your nose or mouth? One rule of masks it that you're not supposed to touch them, at least not until you take them off and dump them straight into the laundry. I don't see how that squares with sitting at work for 8-ish hours.

Well, I can't wear the mask 100% of the time, to have lunch. But I'm wearing it the rest of the time. I handle it by the ear loops whenever possible.

BTW - my job task during this has changed to cleaning/disinfecting frequently touched areas of the store, like the check-out areas (card reader, belt, scanner, register, etc), door handles, cooler/freezer door handles, ""Help" station touchpad scanner display, electronics displays, and restrooms, and cycle that several times a shift.

I normally have a much better job task (full time at the liquor store. In Minnesota, stores like Target that sell liquor, have to have a dedicated store area just to sell liquor, no access to the main store. Our liquor store area used to be a Pizza Hut food court, walled off and external entrance added during renovation). So, the store needed the help and some people they tried didn't take the job seriously enough, and I got some good feedback when they tried me out. So mostly a trusted few are doing this now (I'll get my liquor store job back when the special disinfecting related to the virus is over. Pay is the same).

Anyway, the cashiers and cleaners like myself are really at the highest risk of catching (or transmitting) the virus. So while this may not be as effective as wearing a medical grade N-95 mask 100% of the time, it is way better than doing nothing. Oh yeah, this does mean I'm wearing disposable gloves while I'm doing that. Change gloves several times a day and wash my hands before putting a pair on as well as after taking them off to get ready for a meal.

I wish some others at the store took this seriously enough. In the Break Room, there are normally pairs of 2 x 3 foot tables, to make 2 x 6 tables. Last week they were rearranged into singles, with an "X" on the floor, at 6 foot intervals, for where the chairs should be. One person per table, max capacity 10 people. But we keep having employees drag a chair to the other side of the same table and chat away in pairs, 2 feet from each other face-to-face. Tomorrow, HR is going to be taping a sign to every table to say only one person, and keep 6 feet away (we have big "social distancing" signs all over the place in the employee areas, but too many ignore this. Or know it, but "forget", or something).

One that really got to me yesterday is a cashier who is hyper about getting her mask to be as effective as possible, buying a HEPA air filter to add to the mask a customer gave her (Target has a huge order for masks for employees, but those won't be in for at least 10 days, maybe over 2 weeks). She is so concerned about catching it.
Anyway, in the Break Room, I literally saw her drag a second chair over to talk to a friend face-to-face (without masks on, of course), at the same 2x3 table. That was the last straw for me, I went to the HR leader to tell her this still keeps happening in the break room (We'd discussed it before), she agreed and already planned to have signs made up to put onto each table. She also said I ought to bring it to the attention of a leader real-time whenever I see it happening again so the leader can step in and talk to those who are not social distancing in the employee areas. All my time working at Target, I have tried to not complain to leadership about fellow employees.
But I've really had it with fellow employees not taking this seriously ( Three weeks ago someone came back from a vacation, and about 6 employees all huddled around her and worst yet took their turns one-by-one , to welcome them back by HUGGING! WTF!). Employees can choose to not wear a mask, but now we've got the 6 foot social distance signs all over , and clearly in the Break Room the tables and chairs are set up for one person per table, so they need to respect that.

As for that employee who's so concerned about catching it, I guess she thinks she can only get it from customers, not any employees. And either isn't thinking or caring if she might unknowingly have it and transmit it to fellow employees. I was really dumbfounded because other than this she is a great person.

BTW - don't take the above to imply I'm a hypochondriac. Far from it. My concerns are partly from taking my new job task seriously. And while that technically is to just disinfect certain areas, I figure it makes sense to also have "the big picture" in mind about the virus overall. We originally had a very crappy small print 5.5 x 8.5 sign (too small to grab attention) about social distancing, which stupidly said not to get close to people you know to be sick. That's TOO LATE! That's not truly social distancing! People can have the virus for days and not have any symptoms. I searched the internet and found a way more effective sign, attention getting icon art based with a little text, rather than small text based with tiny artwork, modified it a bit, printed it 8.5 x 11 and took it to the store's HR, suggesting to use it to replace the little crappy one. The store manager really liked it, so they used it to replace the crappy one.

My other big reason is half to look out for the store, and half total self interest. If the store's employees caught the virus, the store might have to be shut down for awhile to be deep cleaned, a potential manpower shortage after re-opening (several employees sick or quarantined for 14 days), and bad publicity for the store (customers have lots of other places they could go instead of a store that recently had a virus breakout). Not good for the store, and not good for my income $.

Also not good for my income if I catch it. Target does have some great sick leave and LOA options (way way better than a certain Hobby chain store). But if I do catch it its gonna cost me some $ no matter what, and potentially far worse. But I'm not obsessing over not catching it myself. If I was, I'd have turned down the offer to temporarily change to do this cleaning. If I do catch it, I want to be despite everyone's best efforts. Not from dumb stuff like people sharing a table face-to-face 2 feet apart, or hugging. And if things do get really bad here, I might change my mind and take a 30 day LOA.
 
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boatgeek

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The crafter's group I work with to make masks for our area health care workers (and others) got in some heavy canvas. You know that silly marketing trend where they make something with a rough texture and a vaguely military color scheme and call it "tactical" (Tactical flashlights, backpacks, etc.)? Well, right here we have a tactical mask. Not quite camo for @cwbullet but pretty close.

IMG_2580.JPG
 

Peartree

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This is what happens when you make several trips to Africa, and to their fabric stores...

Tiger mask.jpg
 

Bill S

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How do you work around lunch, and the general need to at least *occasionally* get to your nose or mouth? One rule of masks it that you're not supposed to touch them, at least not until you take them off and dump them straight into the laundry. I don't see how that squares with sitting at work for 8-ish hours.

They just instituted a masks-required rule at our office, for those who *must* come in, but didn't go into all the details.

My wife, who is a pharmacist, was issued some KN-95 masks (cheap Chinese equivalents to the N95s), and plastic face-shield, and she is FORBIDDEN on pain of termination, to remove them during working hours. Its kind of hard to work a 11-14 hour day without food or drink since she cannot remove the mask. NO breaks (labor laws don't apply to "professionals"), maybe a couple pee breaks in that 11-14 hour day...

She was getting dizzy and almost passed out due to lack of food and dehydration, but doesn't want to get fired if some busybody "Karen" sees her remove her mask to eat/drink. Fricking stupid HR rule.
 
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