When countries in Europe start to quickly lock, many begin to warn people to wear facial masks.
As lockout controls are becoming easier in a variety of countries, face masks are becoming the new standard. Today people must wear face masks while shopping in Austria. In Germany, distributors at train stations are stored with masks to help stop coronavirus spread among commuters. Due to the urgency, many people are buying face masks. It was reported that an Hong Kong online store ‘s website were crashed because too many people were buying masks on the online store.
However, UK officials have not approved the common use of face masks. So far. Nicola Sturgeon, the first Scottish Minister, informed the Scottish public on 28 April, wearing facets in public places, where there is very little space for social distancing.
Throughout the world, face masks are more and more known as a step out of the lockout and are enforced by some countries officially. Despite recent remarks from Sturgeon, the rest of the United Kingdom is still not following. So what does that give? This is a complex and contentious topic. There were fears that people would rush to buy medical masks that made the NHS even more supply scarcity and that masks could lead to an incorrect feeling of security and social distance decline. It is also uncertain if face masks actually protect people from the latest coronavirus.
Nevertheless, research emerging suggests that the benefits will outweigh the risks. We now know that people are contagious before Covid-19 symptoms begin to appear, some without getting any symptoms. In a 23 April study, Imperial College London researchers found out that approximately 40 percent of health workers' infections tend to occur prior to their symptoms.. The point therefore is that the carriers with an asymptomatic or minimum symptom will keep them from spreading the virus unknowingly to people through coughing, sneezing or a conversation instead of shielding their healthy wearers from infection.
The problem is that it is not straightforward to check the efficacy of facial masks. The gold standard for researching causal interactions lies in randomized control experiments – in which one party performs the treatment, while the other receives an alternate intervention or placebo or no intervention. Nonetheless, while confounding variables can be controlled in a laboratory, randomized control trials appear to show little proof of results when performed on people in their homes or in public. Julii Brainard, a senior health research scientist from the University of East Anglia, and her colleagues have reviewed 31 published studies about how well masks shield the face of influenza-like illness.
Julii Brainard and her collaborators have reviewed 31 existing studies on the health of facial masks against influenza-like disease and observed low conformity in most of the tests conducted in randomized control trials. This is because participants who should wear their masks frequently didn't wear them, and people who shouldn't wear them did, which distorted their performance.
"Part of the reason the work was so difficult is that our studies of the highest quality would not be very successful. We're trapped in randomized controlled trials, and researchers ask people what they've done, "Brainard says. The safe participants of households, where an infected individual and his household were still wearing masks, were reportedly 19% less likely to become sick. Nevertheless, there are also many paths for viruses in a household, he notes, making it impossible to figure out when and how someone contracted a disease.
There is also a double norm in the scientific discussion regarding face masks to avoid the transmission of the coronavirus, Babak Javid, a Professor of the Tsinghua University of Medicine in Beijing and an Infectious Disease Consultant at Cambridge University Hospitals, says. In the absence of studies to investigate how different hand-washing methods inhibit the transmission of coronavirus, the 16-second rule has always been promoted. "Different forms of [laboratory] experiments have been performed for washing hands and are often misleading," he adds, noting that no studies have been made to test the two meter social dissociation theory in general.
The popular use of facial masks can also serve a symbolic purpose, as it has always been culturally appropriate for many Countries in asia. As Ed Yong states in The Atlantic, healthy people can tell those in society they take the epidemic seriously by using face masks in public and are ready to protect them from potential infection.
Brainard's analysis of 31 studies shows that face coverings can protect persons when worn for short periods, especially in crowded areas such as streets or shopping malls, where it would be hard to remain at a distance of 2.5 meters. For example, wearing masks for hours in office is not feasible as people fall into their normal routines.
On 22 April, the Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (Sage) of the UK Government met to discuss the latest evidence and make new proposals in the weeks ahead. "They suggest things like wearing masks in crowded areas where you can't hold at least 2.5 meters apart," says Brainard. "It's very understandable. "I could see a far more welcoming role."