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Standing three feet apart and wearing a mask reduces the chance of coronavirus transmission by up to 80 percent

By keeping at least three feet away from others and wearing face covers and eye protection, the spread of the new coronavirus can be reduced by up to 80 percent.

A team led by McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada investigated how social distance, face masks, and eye protection affect the spread of several coronaviruses, including COVID-19, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). ).

They found that standing at least three feet lowers the risk of COVID-19 transmission, but standing six feet away cuts the risk in half.

In addition, not wearing an eye cover increased the risk of infection by a factor of 2.5, and not wearing a mask increased the risk sixfold.

However, the studies say none of these, even when used together, provide complete protection and other protective measures, such as hand hygiene, are vital to reduce transmission.

A new study from McMaster University in Canada found that at least three feet away reduced the risk of virus transmission, but six feet away cut the risk in half (above)

A new study from McMaster University in Canada found that at least three feet away reduced the risk of virus transmission, but six feet away cut the risk in half (above)

Wearing a face mask lowered the risk of infection by up to three percent, and not wearing a mask increased it to 17 percent, a sixfold increase (above)

Wearing a face mask lowered the risk of infection by up to three percent, and not wearing a mask increased it to 17 percent, a sixfold increase (above)

Wearing a face mask lowered the risk of infection by up to three percent, and not wearing a mask increased it to 17 percent, a sixfold increase (above)

The risk of infection from not wearing an eye cover was 16 percent compared to six percent when wearing eye protection - a 2.5-fold decrease (above)

The risk of infection from not wearing an eye cover was 16 percent compared to six percent when wearing eye protection - a 2.5-fold decrease (above)

The risk of infection from not wearing an eye cover was 16 percent compared to six percent when wearing eye protection – a 2.5-fold decrease (above)

For the review, the largest to date on these measures, published in The Lancet, the team looked at 172 observational studies looking at measures to prevent the spread of several coronaviruses, including SARS, MERS, and COVID-19.

All studies, which were reduced to 44, looked at how social distance, face masks, and eye protection affected the spread of the virus in both community and health care in 16 countries.

“Our findings are the first to aggregate all direct information on COVID-19, SARS and MERS and provide the currently best available evidence on the optimal use of these common and simple interventions to” flatten “the curve,” said co-lead author Dr. Holger Schünemann, professor in the department of epidemiology and environmental health, at McMaster University.

“Governments and the public health community can use our results to provide clear advice to community institutions and health professionals about these protective measures to reduce infection risk.”

When analyzing data from nine studies of physical distance and virus spread, they found that standing three feet away was associated with a lower risk of infection.

The risk of infection when three feet or more away from an infected person was three percent, but increased to 13 percent when less than three feet away.

The researchers suggest that for every additional three feet further, up to about 10 feet, the risk of infection or transmission may decrease by half.

Even when all three are used together, the team says none of them offer complete protection and that other measures are in place. such as hand hygiene, are essential. Pictured: People sit in social distance markers in Domino Park in Brooklyn, New York on May 27

Even when all three are used together, the team says none of them offer complete protection and that other measures are in place. such as hand hygiene, are essential. Pictured: People sit in social distance markers in Domino Park in Brooklyn, New York on May 27

Even when all three are used together, the team says none of them offer complete protection and that other measures are in place. such as hand hygiene, are essential. Pictured: People sit in social distance markers in Domino Park in Brooklyn, New York on May 27

In an attached comment, an expert says homemade fabric masks are not as effective as masks with water-resistant fabric, multiple layers, and a good fit on the face. Pictured: Charles Perez wears protective face mask and gloves while waiting for tables at the Morada Bay Beach Cafe in Islamorada, Florida Keys, June 1

In an attached comment, an expert says homemade fabric masks are not as effective as masks with water-resistant fabric, multiple layers, and a good fit on the face. Pictured: Charles Perez wears protective face mask and gloves while waiting for tables at the Morada Bay Beach Cafe in Islamorada, Florida Keys, June 1

In an attached comment, an expert says homemade fabric masks are not as effective as masks with water-resistant fabric, multiple layers, and a good fit on the face. Pictured: Charles Perez wears protective face mask and gloves while waiting for tables at the Morada Bay Beach Cafe in Islamorada, Florida Keys, June 1

Thirteen eye protection studies showed that face shields and goggles reduce the risk of infection compared to no eye cover.

The risk of infection from not wearing an eye cover was 16 percent, compared to six percent from wearing eye protection.

However, the researchers note that there isn’t much particular evidence when it comes to the benefits of wearing eye cover.

Similar benefits have been seen when wearing face masks within households and with contacts from infected people.

Wearing a face mask reduced the risk of infection by up to three percent and not wearing a mask up to 17 percent.

Researchers found that health workers had better protection against the spread of viruses by N-95s and other respiratory masks.

For the general public, either disposable surgical masks or reusable 12 to 16 layer cotton masks provided adequate protection.

The team said legislators should ensure that everyone has equal access and availability for face masks.

“With ventilators such as N95s, surgical masks and eye protection, scarce and urgent needs are needed by frontline health workers to treat COVID-19 patients, and there is an urgent need to increase production capacity and reuse it to overcome global shortages,” he said. co-author Dr Derek Chu, an assistant professor of health sciences at McMaster University.

We also believe that solutions should be found to make face masks available to the general public. However, it should be clear that wearing a mask is not an alternative to physical distance, eye protection or basic measures such as hand hygiene, but it can add an extra layer of protection. ‘

In a linked comment, Dr. Raina MacIntyre of the Kirby Institute at the University of New South Wales in Australia, who was not involved in the study, said the findings are “an important milestone.”

‘[They] also report that masks and multilayer masks are more protective than single-layer masks, ‘she wrote.

This finding is vital to inform the spread of homemade fabric mask designs, many of which are single-layered. A well-designed fabric mask should have water-resistant fabric, multiple layers and a good fit on the face.

‘Universal use of face masks can make it possible to safely lift restrictions in communities that want to resume normal activities and could protect people in busy public institutions and within households.

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