An evidence review of face masks against COVID-19

August 30, 2021 ☼ pandemicmasksevidence

Source: NIH - Link

Our review of the literature offers evidence in favor of widespread mask use as source control to reduce community transmission: Nonmedical masks use materials that obstruct particles of the necessary size; people are most infectious in the initial period postinfection, where it is common to have few or no symptoms (45, 46, 141); nonmedical masks have been effective in reducing transmission of respiratory viruses; and places and time periods where mask usage is required or widespread have shown substantially lower community transmission.

The available evidence suggests that near-universal adoption of nonmedical masks when out in public, in combination with complementary public health measures, could successfully reduce Re to below 1, thereby reducing community spread if such measures are sustained. Economic analysis suggests that mask wearing mandates could add 1 trillion dollars to the US GDP (32, 34).

Mask wearing for the reduced transmission of respiratory diseases has always been supported by science and moreover by practice.