N95 masks with respirator valves do not prevent coronavirus, says Dr Harsh Vardhan
Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has said that N95 masks with respirator valves in them do not prevent the coronavirus from spreading out. He said, N95 mask fitted with perforated respirator is contrary to the rules adopted to prevent the spread of coronavirus. In a tweet, Dr Vardhan appealed to everyone to use a triple layer mask made of cloth and also to encourage others for this.
Director-General of Health Services, Dr Rajiv Garg has written to the Principal Secretaries of health and medical education of all the States in this regard. In the letter, Dr Garg said that the use of valved respirator N95 masks is detrimental to the measures adopted for preventing the spread of coronavirus as it does not prevent the virus from escaping out of the mask.
In view of it, the DGHS has urged the States to instruct all concerned to follow the guidelines on the use of face and mouth cover and prevent inappropriate use of N95 masks. Dr Garg said, it has been observed that there is inappropriate use of N95 masks, particularly those with the valved respirator, by the public other than designated health workers. He also referred to an advisory issued by the Health Ministry on the use of homemade protective cover for face and mouth available on its website.
In April, the Health Ministry had issued an advisory on the use of homemade protective cover for face and mouth, asking people to wear it, particularly when they step out of their residences. It also listed the procedures of making such homemade masks, asking to ensure it fits the face well and there are no gaps on the sides.