The National Food and Drugs Administration Control (NAFDAC), on Monday, 27th April, warns that masks made of cloth are not an ideal solution to protect against Coronavirus.

For a few weeks, nonmedical face masks and coverings have gone from a grassroots campaign for personal use and patients in medical centers to a voluntary health recommendation by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, to a requirement in public places for a growing number of states and countries.

NAFDAC disclosed this in a statement released on its official website; identified cloth masks as barrier mask said are not to be used in healthcare settings or by healthcare professionals.

The statement reads:

“Nonmedical face masks include self-made or commercial masks or face covers made of cloth, other textiles or other materials such as paper. They are not standardized and are not intended for use in healthcare settings or by healthcare professionals.

“They serve to limit the spread of droplets and offer some measure of protection to those around you.

“The material of construction is usually cloth(textile fabric), non-woven wadding, or paper-like materials. For these Barrier Masks, 100% cotton is preferred though; polyester, linen or knit fabric can be used.

“Simple test: If wearer can put off a flame from a cigarette lighter that is placed in front of the wearer, the mask is protective enough

“Barrier face masks do not prevent you from contracting the disease, but, they have been found to contribute to reduce spread of infections when used widely in conjunction with other measures. Such measures include social distancing, not touching the face, eyes or mouth, washing of hands with soap for 20 secs, or use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

“These face masks are recommended to be washed daily and preferably should be a double layer of fabric to increase the absorbency and effectiveness.

“It must be noted that several washes, drying, and stretching of the mask over time reduce the effectiveness of the mask.”

However, for months the CDC recommended medical-grade face masks for people who were presumed to be or confirmed to be ill with COVID-19, as well as for medical care workers. But spiking cases across the world have proven that current measures have not been strong enough to flatten the curve.


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