Why Royal Society President is Urging People to Wear Face Mask
“A Face mask is the biggest weapon in fighting against the novel coronavirus and no one should go outside without wearing a cloth mask.”
This may sound a generic statement, but when the person of the stature of the president of the Royal Society of London, Venki Ram Krishnan says this, it must have some deeper meaning and should be followed in letter and spirit
He was compelled to say this after a new set of evidence that further reinforced the benefits of face covering. It protects both wearer and those around them.
Despite the obvious benefits people still hesitate to wear a mask and that is why it has become increasingly difficult to control the rapid spread of coronavirus resulting in so many death.
Venki Ramakrishnan says: “The virus has not been eliminated, so as we lift lockdown and people increasingly interact with each other we need to use every tool we have to reduce the risk of a second wave of infection.”
He further says that there is no magical cure for the virus as a vaccine is expected to come later this year. In order to save life face-covering along with hand washing and social distancing is the ultimate weapon we have.
Wearing face masks becomes all the more important in indoor spaces where social distancing is not easy to maintain.
Surprisingly, the public has adopted handwashing and distancing but not wearing face cover in the UK. One reason expert’s site is inconsistent guidelines from government authorities.
Probably, the message is not clear enough so that people are convinced of them. However, Venki feels it’s high time these inconsistencies should be removed else it will be too late.
A report by the Royal Society’s SET-C group which was published jointly by the British Academy and the Royal Society reiterated the effectiveness of different mask types and categorically stated the importance of face-covering to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Researchers considered various factors like public understanding of the virus transmission, risk perception, the effectiveness of public messages, etc.
What face cover should you choose?
Though many experts have rightly pointed out about the importance of face-covering or cloth masks, they’ve largely ignored a major environmental problem looming large. The use of single-use plastic or cotton mask as a face covering has created a major environmental problem. The disposal of such masks has created a big headache.
Hemp face masks could have been a probable solution as it is highly effective in trapping and killing various types of microbes, they are comfortable to wear, and are reusable.
Their carbon footprint is very low.
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