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The Omicron variant is very contagious! All students are encouraged to wear medical grade masks indoors and when in close contact to other students and/or instructors. This is to provide additional protection from COVID-19 infection.
- N95 and KN95 respirators are designed to filter at least 95% or airborne particles.
- N95 masks filter 95% of particles as small as 0.3 microns in size, hence the 95 in the name. (Although SARS-CoV-2 virus particles are about 0.1 microns in size by themselves, remember that virus particles are usually attached to something bigger, like the respiratory droplets generated when talking.)
- KN95 masks also filter 95% of small particles. They feature a tent-like shape that creates a little pocket of air between your nose and the fabric, which makes them appealing to many people: They feel somewhat easier to breathe through, less obstructive and stifling than N95s.
- KF94 masks offer an alternative fit to KN95s or N95s masks and filter 94% of particles down to 0.3 microns in size. These masks feature ear loops, an adjustable nose bridge and side flaps to create a tight fit. For some people, they're more comfortable and easier to wear than the alternatives.
- Respirators are even more effective if they are fit tested.
- Get more information about Disposable Respirators at C|Net.
Medical/Surgical Grade Masks
- Use masks with a nose wire and at least three layers of non-woven material (melt-blown fabric and/or polypropylene.
- Medical masks should be resistant to fluids. Test your masks with a drip of water on the front. The water should not soak into the mask. It should form beads of water on the surface.
- If you use a cloth mask, make sure it has a third layer of non-woven fabric. This includes a filter insert or polypropylene layer.
- These respirators and medical/surgical masks are designed for one-time use. They should be thrown away once they become wet or dirty OR after a day of use, whichever comes first.
Check Your Fit
- No matter what kind of mask you wear, check the fit and eliminate gaps above the nose or on the sides. Gaps significantly reduce the effectiveness of any mask.
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