Face Mask Mandates

Face Mask Mandates

Face masks are a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from reaching other people. Studies show that masks reduce the spray of droplets when worn over the nose and mouth. 

On November 24, 2020, the FDA published Face Masks, Including Surgical Masks, and Respirators for COVID-19, a comprehensive webpage on FDA.gov with answers to frequently asked questions about face masks, surgical masks, and respirators. 

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated on November 8, 2020, everyone 2-years of age and older should wear a mask in public settings and when they are around people who do not live in their household.' As of November 20, 2020, there are 37 US states mandating face coverings in public, reports the AARP.

However, the CDC says 'wearing face masks may 'not' be necessary when outside by yourself, away from others, or with other people who live in your household.'

Studies Defining Clinical Benefits When Wearing Face Masks Outside

November 18, 2020 - A study published by the Annals of Internal Medicine reported a total of 3,030 participants were randomly assigned to wear masks, and 2,994 were assigned to control; Infection with SARS-CoV-2 occurred in 42 participants recommended masks (1.8%) and 53 control participants (2.1%). The difference observed was not statistically significant.

September 10, 2020 - A non-peer-reviewed study of a database of more than 20,000 cases (including the 7,324 Chinese cases) found 461 (6%) that were associated with coronavirus transmissions during completely outdoor environments.

Clinical Benefits From Wearing Face Masks When Inside

November 20, 2020 - Trends in County-Level COVID-19 Incidence in Counties With and Without a Mask Mandate — Kansas, June 1–August 23, 2020.

November 20, 2020 - CDC Scientific Brief: Community Use of Cloth Masks to Control the Spread of SARS-CoV-2.

August 14, 2020 - Mask or no mask for COVID-19: A public health and market study.

August 3, 2020 - The Lancet: 'no intervention is associated with affording complete protection from infection, a combination of measures will always be required, now and during the next pandemic.'

August 2020 - A rapid systematic review of the efficacy of face masks and respirators against coronaviruses and other respiratory transmissible viruses for the community, healthcare workers, and sick patients.

July 9, 2020 - Quantitative Method for Comparative Assessment of Particle Removal Efficiency of Fabric Masks as Alternatives to Standard Surgical Masks for PPE.

July 6, 2020 - Face masks for community use: An awareness call to the differences in materials.

July 4, 2020 - In East Asian nations, the public practice became widespread in 2003 when SARS, another variant of the coronavirus, spread from China to neighboring countries.

June 16, 2020 - This study provides evidence from a natural experiment on the effects of state government mandates for face mask use in public issued by fifteen states plus Washington, D.C., between April 8 and May 15, 2020.

May 21, 2020 - Effectiveness of Common Fabrics to Block Aqueous Aerosols of Virus-like Nanoparticles.

Face Mask Mandate News Articles

November 16, 2020 - In Australia, where there is low community transmission of COVID-19, wearing a mask in the community when you are well is not generally recommended. However, where there is significant community transmission (as determined by jurisdictional public health authorities), you may choose, or be required to, wear a mask.

November 14, 2020 - North Dakota has become the 35th U.S. state to require face coverings to be worn in public.

November 6, 2020 - Massachusetts Governor Baker issued an Order requiring face masks or cloth face coverings in all public places, even where they are able to maintain 6 feet of distance from others. The Order allows for an exception for residents who cannot wear a face-covering due to a medical or disabling condition, but it allows employers to require employees to provide proof of such a condition. It also allows schools to require that students participating in in-person learning provide proof of such a medical or disabling condition.

November 5, 2020 - In London, England, it is mandatory to wear a face-covering on all public transport, visitor attractions, and entertainment venues. Different rules exist in different parts of the UK, such as Wales.

November 4, 2020 - The authors of a recent study have withdrawn the manuscript because there are increased rates of SARS- CoV-2 cases in the areas that COVID-19 related hospitalizations increased after mask mandates were launched in 1,083 U.S. counties.

October 27, 2020 - Russia has reinstated a nationwide mask mandate. Russians will be required to wear masks in all crowded places, including public transport, taxis, parking lots, and elevators.

August 27, 2020 - Paris and its suburbs had already made masks compulsory in many of the busiest streets, but this expands the rule to all public outdoor spaces. Wearing masks in indoor public spaces such as shops and public transport is already compulsory throughout France. Motorists in cars are not included but scooter riders are, but joggers and cyclists are not.

August 21, 2020 - Health authorities in China’s capital Beijing have removed a requirement for people to wear masks outdoors.

August 4, 2020 - Why Do Japanese People Use Masks Against COVID-19, Even Though Masks Are Unlikely to Offer Protection From Infection?

Note: This content is aggregated from various FDA, CDC, WHO, university, association, news services, and other third-party information publishers.