Covid19 Updates From the SSTC's Nurse's Desk (Ep 2)
May 16 2020
To mask or not to mask!
The Coronavirus (COVID 19) is new. Scientists around the world are still learning new things in real time. As you may recall, the WHO (World Health Organization) reported in January that the virus is not airborne hence no need for masks. This has now been revised, however, and the experts have now declared that the virus remains airborne for at least 8 hours. If you have been following international news, to date all around the world people are wearing masks.
Jamaica has recorded 252 confirmed cases, most of which are workplace related. Of this figure, only 34 cases are imported. In BPOs/Call Centres, hundreds of persons are in small spaces, using and are sharing the same equipment and devices. The only proven behaviour that will prevent you from touching your face or to stop droplets from spreading is the wearing of facial masks. In addition, our health authority has now declared that wearing masks is mandatory. I have personally observed that numerous persons have been wearing their masks incorrectly. It is important that the mask be properly worn, installed and removed in order to maximize safety. If your mask is removed from your nose and mouth to your forehead or under your chin, it may become contaminated and should be disposed of. After wearing the mask, the outside is considered to be contaminated, so remove your mask by using the strings or elastic that holds it in place. It is then placed in soapy water for washing or placed in a plastic bag away from your other personal items, until you are able to wash it (if it is a reusable mask). If it is disposable, place immediately in the trash. A REUSABLE MASK SHOULD BE WASHED DAILY.
It is ideal to have more than one mask. Individuals should invest in reusable masks which are more economical. When wearing a mask, keep it on as long as possible. Ensure that you don’t remove as long as you are in a public space, especially in taxis and other modes of public transportation. Ideally, a mask should not be worn for more than approximately 4 hours. Change your mask when you break for a meal. If you must remove and replace the same mask, be careful to fold it, protecting the inside and place it in a sterile plastic bag.
As we continue to practice sanitizing our hands, social distancing and wearing our masks, keep a song in your heart because this too shall pass.
# Stay home #Stay safe.
Althea Dillon-Scott (Nurse)
April 22, 2020