Wearing two masks or a close-fitting one offers significantly better protection against catching and spreading Covid-19, according to a new US study released on Wednesday.
The impact of mask-wearing has been a hotly-debated topic worldwide during the pandemic, with the United States — where 468,000 people have died — now urging everyone over the age of two to wear masks in public.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study examined fitting a cloth mask over a medical procedure mask, and also knotting the ear loops of a medical mask to improve fit.
“Each modification substantially improved source control and reduced wearer exposure,” the study concluded.
“These experiments highlight the importance of good fit to maximize mask performance.”
In one test, an unknotted medical mask alone blocked 42 percent of particles from a simulated cough, and the cloth mask alone blocked 44 percent.
But the combination of the cloth mask covering the medical mask blocked 92 percent of…