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Face Coverings

Three good reasons to wear a face covering

1. Masks protect other people

COVID-19 spreads from person to person by aerosols and droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks.  Face masks can protect us by blocking them.  This dramatically reduces the spread of the virus and helps protect others from catching it.

2. Masks protect you, as well

Simply put the more of us that wear face masks the less virus there is circulatingWearing a mask can help reduce your chances of catching the virus

3. You may not realise you are contagious

One in four people with COVID-19 don’t have any symptoms.  So knowing who is infected can be very challenging.  That is why wearing a mask, even if you are healthy and feel well, can help prevent unknowingly spreading the virus to others.

In what types of places or situations is it helpful to wear one?

There are some situations where you may choose to still wear a mask – not only for your safety, but for the safety of those around you. These might include times when:

  • you are indoors or in a crowded place
  • you are using public transport
  • you are in an area where Covid-19 cases are rising
  • you are particularly vulnerable, for example, because of your age or health, or you are spending time with someone who is

Do I still have to wear a face covering by law?

The legal requirement to wear a face mask has ended in England, however some healthcare settings, businesses, and travel operators will still need you to wear a face covering to access their services.

For example, you will still be required to wear a face covering when you’re at the GP, in a hospital, or other healthcare setting

The list is quickly evolving, so it is still a good idea to carry a face mask with you in case you are asked to wear one to access these services.

For up to date information please see this webpage.

I have had all of my Covid-19 jabs, why should I still wear one?

Although the chance of contracting COVID-19 is low once a person has been fully vaccinated, it is not zero.  Wearing a face covering adds an added layer of protection to help both catching and spreading the virus.

There is still the potential even if booster vaccinated to become infected without symptoms and then spread it to others who have not been vaccinated yet.  If vaccinated people don’t continue to wear a face mask until more people are considered fully vaccinated, they could cause the virus to keep circulating.

Do face coverings actually provide protection? What is the scientific evidence?

The science supports using masks, with recent studies suggesting that they could save lives in different ways: research shows that they cut down the chances of both transmitting and catching COVID-19.

What type of face covering is the most effective?

The important thing to look for in a mask is the fit. Face coverings are supposed to cover both mouth and nose and should fit around the side of the face without having to be held in place, either secured with elasticated or self-tie straps. It should be made of a material that you find to be comfortable and breathable, such as cotton and ideally include two layers of fabric.

How often and in what way should I clean my face covering?

You should clean your mask after every wearing. This reduces the risk of spreading the coronavirus or other germs.

Unless disposable, it should be able to be washed with other items of laundry according to fabric washing instructions and dried without causing the face covering to be damaged.

Single-use disposable masks should not be washed and reused.

Still need help?

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