A representative of the World Health Organization to the Philippines said on Monday there is no need to wear double surgical face masks.
Asked if it is necessary to wear two types of masks at the same time, WHO country representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe said: “It depends on what kind of mask you are wearing.”
“If you are wearing medical or surgical masks, we don’t think there is a necessity for two masks. I have seen some reports that say if you wear two masks, it is more protective. The question is where do you draw the line? You could say five masks could be more protective than two,” he said over ABS-CBN News Channel.
The WHO official said what was important is to wear surgical masks properly and to not touch them frequently.
“We need to continue to follow hand hygiene, mask-wearing, cough etiquette, and physical distancing. These are the measures that will help us protect ourselves and our loved ones as we wait for the potential arrival of vaccines and an end to this pandemic but that is still a long road,” Abeyasinghe added.
Last week, the Department of Health (DOH) said it will study whether it is appropriate for Filipinos to wear double face masks to effectively prevent the spread of COVID-19, especially since the new variant is already in the Philippines.
WHO: No need to wear double surgical masks
This is after the United States recommended a double face mask or surgical masks to have an extra mask to prevent respiratory droplets from passing.
But for Health Undersecretary and spokesperson Maria Rosario Vergeire, Filipinos are already doing double protection when wearing face masks and face shields.
In America, wearing a face shield is not recommended for their citizens.
“But I think ‘yung isang mask which guarantees us itong proteksyon ng 60 to 70% plus yung face shield plus the physical distance which will give you about 99% protection is enough for now,” said Vergeire.