The COVID-19 pandemic presents monumental challenges. A newly emerged virus to which the world’s population has no immunity, coupled with the fast movement of individuals across the globe, has set the stage for an outbreak of proportions not seen within the final century.

For infection with this virus to occur, it must come into contact with the eyes, nose, or mouth. This occurs when droplets produced by an contaminated individual (by way of speaking, coughing or sneezing), land on the face of one other person. These infectious droplets can travel up to 6 feet, which is the reason to promote social distancing. Touching a surface that is contaminated with infectious droplets and then touching one’s own eyes, nose or mouth, is one other way for infection to occur. Subsequently, the important thing to avoiding infection is to have these areas of the face covered.

In hospitals, face masks and goggles are typically used to prevent publicity to infectious droplets. Nonetheless, face masks shortages are occurring because of interruptions within the supply chain, which is deeply rooted in China and disrupted by the pandemic. Some health care workers have been pressured to resort to scarves and bandannas in a final-ditch attempt to protect themselves while providing care. Even when plentiful, face masks aren’t without problems. Once they grow to be wet from the humidity in exhaled air, they lose effectiveness. In addition, some individuals contact their face more usually to adjust the masks, which increases the risk of infection if the fingers are contaminated.

Material masks, although better than nothing, have been shown to be less protective than medical-grade face masks.

We imagine that face shields provide a greater solution. There are lots of types, but all use clear plastic materials connected to a headpiece to cover the eyes, nose and mouth, thereby stopping infectious droplets from contacting these areas where the virus can enter the body. They cover more of the face than masks and forestall the wearer from touching their face. Importantly, face shields are durable, might be cleaned after use, reused repeatedly, and for many people are more comfortable than face masks. Because these shields are reusable and are diversified across the availability chains of a number of industries, the current provide is less limited than for face masks. They will even be made at dwelling with items from office supply and craft stores.

Every health care worker wants a face shield for protection at work. While face masks are nonetheless needed in some situations, implementation of face shields will vastly reduce the necessity for face masks and extend the limited nationwide provide of masks. Engineers have produced designs for face shields that are within the public domain, and fabrication at scale is comparatively simple. To make sure that every health care worker has a face shield, production might want to ramp up to meet the demand by way of current manufacturers and recruitment of additional factories. Because the design is simple, huge speedy production wouldn’t be difficult.

As soon as the health care workpressure is supplied, distribution to the general public should start, with a goal to provide a face shield to each person within the country. It needs to be worn anytime an individual leaves their house, while in any public place, and even at work. Although shelter-at-house approaches are needed to «bend the curve» of this pandemic, the following societal disruption limits the time that political leaders are keen to sustain such measures. As soon as each person is shielded, nonetheless, reducing restrictions on movement would carry less risk. Common shielding may reduce reliance on social distancing since infectious droplets can not reach the face of susceptible individuals. Handwashing, however, would stay essential to maintain folks from infecting themselves with virus discovered on the arms after touching contaminated surfaces.

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