Residents advised, carefully manage, wash used cloth facemasks

Dr. Hazel Laws discusses how to carefully manage face masks.
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— St. Kitts and Nevis residents are advised to carefully manage facemasks after going out in public. According to Chief Medical Officer Dr. Hazel Laws coronavirus can remain present and infectious on the outer layer of masks for up to seven days. Dr. Laws referenced the Lancet Microbe and a study published in the American Journal on Infection Control that noted that people touch their face 23 times per hour on average.

Wearing of facemasks in public is mandated by the COVID-19 Emergency Powers.

“I’m sharing this to underscore the need for us to manage our facemasks properly,” explained Dr. Laws. “Those of us who wear the disposable facemasks, it is important for us to discard of them properly in the bin and always wash your hands after taking off the facemask.”

Dr. Laws advised persons wearing non-pharmaceutical cloth masks they need frequent washing.

“Those of us who wear the cloth of the fabric facemask, I would recommend that you launder or wash these masks at the end of every day,” said Dr. Laws. “Do not reuse a facemask two or three or four days in a row.”

“After removing cloth masks, it’s important to wash your hands thoroughly,” concluded Dr. Laws.

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