Some politicians have declared masks to be effectively useless, including several in Michigan. House Speaker Lee Chatfield said, “There are health experts who disagree about the value of mask usage.” State Rep. Jim Lower claimed, “All this non-sense about wear (sic) masks is intended to mask the fact that nothing the Government can do will stop the spread.” And State Rep. Beau LaFave argued, “…people don’t follow social distancing when everyone has a mask on. Masks provide a false sense of security…”
Experts agree that masks clearly help prevent the spread of COVID-19, especially when more people wear them.1 Research shows that Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s quick implementation of a statewide stay-at-home order saved lives.2 In a study of mandatory mask policies in 15 states and Washington D.C., researchers found infection rates were lower compared with other states that didn’t mandate masks, with as many as 450,000 people spared from COVID-19 infections.3 In countries where wearing a mask was policy or a cultural norm, deaths were lower compared to countries with neither. A New England Journal of Medicine study demonstrated how masks stopped oral and aerosolized droplets dispersed when people speak normally.
DOCS agrees with public health experts that everyone should wear a mask in public, and encourages elected officials to amplify that unified message.
Check the facts:
1: University of California San Francisco: Still Confused About Masks? Here’s the Science Behind How Face Masks Prevent Coronavirus
2: Imperial College: Report 23: State-level tracking of COVID-19 in the United States
3: Health Affairs: Community Use Of Face Masks And COVID-19: Evidence From A Natural Experiment Of State Mandates In The US
4: New England Journal of Medicine: Visualizing Speech-Generated Oral Fluid Droplets with Laser Light Scattering