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Widespread Mask May Prevent Over 2 Lakh COVID-19 Deaths In India,Stop Using Valved Face Masks

Until there is a widely available vaccine against COVID-19, social distancing and wearing face masks in public are the most effective ways to prevent infection and reduce the spread of the disease. Airborne transmission via respiratory aerosols is believed to be the dominant route for the spread of COVID-19.

Research has shown that tiny atmospheric particles (aerosols) that infected people emit while talking or coughing or sneezing can remain in the air tens of minutes and can travel tens of feet. Wearing a face mask can not only stop spreading these infected coughing droplets from infected persons but also prevent uninfected persons from inhaling the aerosols.

A new study has predicted that widespread mask use and data-driven social distancing measures may help prevent over 200,000 Covid-19-related deaths in India by December 1. The study by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington in the US suggested that the COVID-19 will continue to pose a major public health threat in India.

Hand Sanitizer Plays A Vital Role

A bottle of hand sanitizer can kill you instead of killing the coronavirus. According to a study, one out of two sanitizers are adulterated and, some even contain methanol, a toxic chemical.The pandemic has given us a few companions like a face mask and a small bottle of hand sanitizer. For the anxious ones, gloves and a face shield too.

Why Not To Use Valved Face Mask

It is also important to choose the right type of mask as all face coverings may not be effective at preventing the spread of coronavirus. A report published Tuesday in the US journal Physics of Fluids revealed that plastic face shields or masks fitted with a breathing valve are ineffective at blocking the expelled droplets from wearers. According to the study researchers from Florida Atlantic University, the invisible droplets expelled when a person wearing a valved face shield or mask sneezes or coughs can move around the visor with relative ease and spread out over a large area.

Since a large number of droplets can pass through the exhale valve unfiltered, a mask with a valve may be ineffective in stopping the spread of the COVID-19 virus if the wearer is infected, they added.High-quality cloth or medical masks of plain design work better in helping prevent the spread of the virus, they concluded.

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Corona Virus Peek May Arrive In December

The IHME model has predicted a peak in infections by early to mid-December, with close to 6 million new infections per day and total deaths of about 500,000 in the ‘no intervention’ scenario.

However, in the best-case scenario, India may see approximately 291,145 total Covid-19 deaths by December 1, up from 60,000 in late August. This is when usage of face mask increases to near-universal (95 per cent) levels and that six-week, state-level lockdowns are re-imposed in the states, where the daily death rate exceeds 8 per million.

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