In some settings masks manufactured for purposes such as construction or manufacturing are available. These masks are often described as reusable half face masks, reusable full face masks or dust filtration masks and are designed for preventing the transmission of chemicals, solvents, dust and other particles. They normally have filters that are attached on the side which are replaceable. Some of these masks are effective for use against SARS-CoV-2 but use of these masks in health care settings should always be verified by the manufacturer and national guidelines. The use of these types of masks is not recommended in community settings because they are not available at scale, they are visually quite scary looking and may create unnecessary fear, and because they are produced at a range of qualities.
Want to learn more about mask use for interrupting the spread of COVID-19?
- How could wearing a mask reduce COVID-19 transmission?
- What types of masks are there and what are they designed to do?
- What is a N95 respirator and who should use one?
- What is a surgical mask and who should use one?
- What is a fabric mask, who should use one, and how should they be made?
- What should be considered when making fabric masks?
- Hygienic use of fabric face masks
- Why doesn’t the WHO recommend that everyone wears face masks in all settings?
- What do we know about the effectiveness of masks to prevent and COVID-19 transmission in community settings?
- What can modelling studies tell us about the effectiveness of wearing masks?
- How well do masks work under laboratory (experimental) conditions?
- Do homemade masks increase the risk of respiratory disease?
- How might an evolving understanding of virus transmission affect mask recommendations?
- Should hygiene promotion staff wear masks to protect themselves and others?