JNS: The Union health ministry has warned all states against the use of N95 masks with valved respirator; urged the use of home-made protective cover or mask.
The ministry said that such types of masks can be detrimental as the valves do not prevent the virus from escaping out of the mask.
Prof (Dr) Rajiv Garg, Director General of Health Services, issued the directive in a letter to the health secretaries of all states on Monday.
“It has been observed that there is an inappropriate use of the N95 mask (particularly with a valved respirator) by the public other than designated health workers. In this regard, I would like to draw your attention to the advisory on the use of home-made protective cover for face and mouth available on the website of the MoHFW,” it stated.
“It is to bring to your knowledge that the use of valved respirator N95 masks is detrimental to the measures adopted for preventing the spread of the coronavirus as it does not prevent the virus from escaping out of the mask,” the letter reveals.
The advisory has asked the states to prevent inappropriate use of N95 masks.
In April, the Centre had issued an advisory on the use of homemade protective cover for face and mouth. The advisory stressed such face covers must be washed and cleaned each day. These handmade masks, however, are not meant for health workers or those working with or in contact with Covid-19 patients or those who are patients themselves as they are required to wear specified protective gear, the health ministry had said.