In line with recent guidance from the CDC, Los Angeles County is now encouraging the use of face coverings while out in public as an added measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
This recommendation is a change from previous CDC guidelines because of research on asymptomatic spread which reveals that a significant number of individuals with COVID-19 will show mild or no symptoms but can still transmit the virus to others in close proximity through respiratory droplets when coughing, sneezing or speaking.
Wearing cloth face coverings is especially recommended when visiting places where physical distancing of at least six feet cannot always be maintained such as grocery stores and pharmacies.
It should be noted that wearing a cloth face covering is not a substitute for other safe distancing guidelines. Individuals need to continue:
- Staying home as much as possible, except for essential needs such as getting groceries, meals or medical prescriptions.
- Maintaining at least six feet away from other individuals in public, and not gathering in groups with non-household members.
- Frequently washing hands thoroughly, avoiding touching and disinfecting high-touch surfaces.
Also, because of the nationwide shortage of medical supplies, it is strongly recommended that individuals not purchase medical-grade face masks but instead make their own cloth face coverings using items already in their possession such as scarves, T-shirts or bed linen made of breathable, tightly-woven cotton fabric that does not lose its shape when washed or dried.
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