To mask or not mask, that is the question.
From Infectious Disease Modeling article by some learned authors from Arizona State University.
“Face masks use by the general public for limiting the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic is controversial, though increasingly recommended, and the potential of this intervention is not well understood.…
The model simulations, at the university, using data relevant to COVID-19 dynamics in New York and Washington, suggest that broad adoption of even relatively ineffective face masks may meaningfully reduce community transmission of COVID-19 and decrease peak hospitalizations and deaths.
Notably, masks are found to be useful with respect to both preventing illness in healthy persons and preventing asymptomatic transmission.
Even very weak masks (20% effective) can still be useful if the underlying transmission rate is relatively low or decreasing.
The authors of the article, from April 2020 concludes: Our results suggest use of face masks by the general public is potentially of high value in curtailing community transmission and the burden of the pandemic. The community-wide benefits are likely to be greatest when face masks are used in conjunction with other non-pharmaceutical practices (such as social-distancing), and when adoption is nearly universal (nation-wide) and compliance is high.”
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