Upgrade Your Mask to Protect Against Covid-19 Variants
More than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic the virus has been to adapt and evolve with new variants beginning to spread all across the world. This is to be expected when dealing with a virus such as COVID-19 and was anticipated to occur. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time."With
several variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing COVID-19, have been documented in the U.S.
UK COVID-19 variant is known as:
B.1.1.7. has been shown to pose a significant threat due to higher levels of transmission. Cassandra M. Pierre An expert in infectious diseases and medical director of public health programs at Boston Medical Center, says the U.K. variant is 50 to 70 percent more transmissible than the current dominant strain in the United States. As of March 23rd, More than 7501 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant have been reported in 49 states. Representing a 2000% increase in variant cases between January and March.
In the UK study, published in the British Medical Journal on Wednesday, infection with the new variant led to 227 deaths in a sample of 54,906 COVID-19 patients, compared with 141 among the same number of patients infected with other variants.
New variants are especially a concern for public health officials as they could become more resistant to antibody treatments and vaccines. Top health officials including White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci are urging Americans to get vaccinated and wear a mask. With COVID-19 transmission being primarily airborne the need for filtration masks such as N95 and KN95 has never been greater.
How do I protect myself and others from the new variants?
The best way most Americans can increase their protection from COVID-19, regardless of variant is to upgrade their mask to a high filtration. Masks such as N95 and KN95 filter airborne particles at ≥95% and are to go mask for Healthcare workers treating infectious patients. During a global pandemic such as COVID-19 anyone can be an unknown carrier and spreader of the disease. Which is why the use of the masks in high-traffic areas such as grocery store, public transportation or gym is crucial in reducing the spread.
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