Better masks can better protect those at risk, Nphet . They say

The state’s public health team has raised the possibility of greater use of high-grade respirator masks, advising the government that they can better protect those at high risk from COVID-19.

The National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) has advised that people may choose to wear FFP3 and slightly lower grade FFP2 respirator or medical masks instead of cloth masks, but refrain from recommending high-grade masks to the public. Gave. instead of clothes.

The new discretionary advice on respirators and medical masks comes after Health Minister Stephen Donnelly asked state chief medical officer Tony Hollohan over Christmas whether these masks should be preferred over the cloth variety due to the rise in Omicron infections.

He asked Dr Holohan to reconsider the decision by state health service watchdog Hika just before Christmas not to recommend high-grade masks for vulnerable groups.

The state’s use of high-grade masks lags behind other countries such as Germany, Austria and Italy, which have introduced the use of FFP2 or equivalent masks in public places.

Nphet acknowledged in his response to the minister that medical and respiratory masks, if worn properly, would provide greater protection than cloth masks, but emphasized that all guidance to the public should be made clear that clothing All types of masks including reduce transmission.

Nphet has advised that a respirator or medical mask instead of a cloth mask should ideally be worn by someone who is a confirmed case of being infectious, has Covid-19 symptoms, is a household contact with a case or who is going into healthcare. or a weak person