172 Studies Show Social Distancing And Face Masks Reduce Coronavirus Spread By 80%

June 2, 2020
social distancing

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Social distancing, face masks and eye protection has reduced the spread of the novel coronavirus by up to 80%, according to data from 172 observational studies looking at how measures to prevent the spread of several coronaviruses including SARS, MERS and COVID-19. The combined report found that standing six feet away from other cut the risk of contracting the virus by half. It also found that not wearing an eye covering increased the risk of infection by 2.5-fold and not wearing a mask increased the risk six-fold. In other terms, keeping 3 feet away from others, you have a 12.8% chance of infection. By keeping 6 feet away, that risk drops to 2.6%.  Wearing a face mask lowered the risk of infection to 3.1%, while not wearing a mask raised your risk to 17.4%, a six-fold increase. The researchers note that there is not a great deal of certain evidence when it comes to the benefits of wearing eye coverings. Healthcare workers had greater protection against spread of viruses from N-95s and other respirator-like masks. For the general public, either disposable surgical masks or reusable 12-to-16 layer cotton masks provided enough protection. However, the research say that, even when used together, none of these offer complete protection and that other protective measures, such as hand hygiene, are vital to reducing transmission.

SOURCE: Daily Mail

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