Yesterday, Governor Cuomo ordered all New Yorkers to wear a mask or cloth covering over nose and mouth whenever in public and unable to social distance. Below, we are sharing guidelines from the CDC including how to wear a cloth face mask and common questions about them:
How to Wear a Cloth Face Covering
Cloth face coverings should—
- fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- be secured with ties or ear loops
- include multiple layers of fabric
- allow for breathing without restriction
- be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape
Common Questions about Cloth Face Coverings
Why do you need to wear cloth face coverings?
In light of new data about how COVID-19 spreads, along with evidence of widespread COVID-19 illness in communities across the country, CDC recommends that people wear a cloth face covering to cover their nose and mouth in the community setting. This is to protect people around you if you are infected but do not have symptoms.
When do you need to wear a cloth face covering?
A cloth face covering should be worn whenever people are in a community setting, especially in situations where you may be near people. These settings include grocery stores and pharmacies. These face coverings are not a substitute for social distancing. Cloth face coverings are especially important to wear in public in areas of widespread COVID-19 illness.
Do you still need to be six-feet away?
Yes. Wearing cloth face coverings is an additional public health measure people should take to reduce the spread of COVID-19. CDC still recommends that you stay at least 6 feet away from other people (social distancing), frequent hand cleaning and other everyday preventive actions. A cloth face covering is not intended to protect the wearer, but it may prevent the spread of virus from the wearer to others. This would be especially important if someone is infected but does not have symptoms. View CDC’s guidance on how to protect yourself.
What type of cloth face coverings should be worn?
Cloth face coverings can be made from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost.
Who should not wear cloth face coverings?
Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children younger than 2 years of age, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cover without assistance.
Why is the CDC recommending a cloth face covering instead of medical grade face mask?
Surgical masks and N95 respirators are in short supply and should be reserved for healthcare workers or other medical first responders, as recommended by CDC guidance.