UW Medicine has told health care workers in its emergency departments to avoid wearing surgical masks into many patients' rooms, said Alexander Adami, a UW Medicine resident.
"Getting a much broader community wide use of masks outside of the health care setting is under very active discussion", Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said.
And even if everyone is working remotely, you can get the word out and encourage people to wear masks when they go out, and you can acknowledge people who show up to video meetings with masks on.
Some health officials worry if this recommendation does come down from the CDC it could create an even bigger shortage of masks that are much needed by doctors, nurses and the like.
UNLV medical professor Anne Weisman says there's nothing wrong with having an extra layer of protection like a cloth mask or bandana.
While initially the CDC said masks should be preserved for caregivers, should everyone now be wearing them when they go out?
Some people wear masks. For example, a person might touch a contaminated mask and then touch his face, circumventing the mask's supposed protection.
It is time for the government to make rational recommendations on appropriate face mask use to complement other public health measures.
But with homemade masks or other face coverings, "the science here is limited", Baeten said, adding that "the data that supports everyone wearing a mask to prevent transmission isn't as strong as it could be".
While DIY masks are not as effective at stopping viruses and bacteria as an N95 mask, there is evidence that they don't need to be in order to help stop the spread of respiratory viruses. One of the underlying reasons given for wearing masks is that people are contagious before showing symptoms, so they are able to spread the virus unwittingly. And can you wash them?
Gray Television, which owns this television station and website, sent a message to its employees Wednesday that it would be shipping them reusable cloth face masks to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
Better than nothing? Advocating mask usage, he fears, could also embolden people who are reluctant to adhere to social distancing measures.
Additionally, she noted that face coverings can easily become contaminated on the outside, especially when touched by unclean hands.
"It doesn't have to be a classical mask, but something that will prevent them from infecting others".
To gain all the benefits of wearing a homemade mask, using tightly-knit materials that isn't frayed is important.
Additionally, in a press conference last night, government officials also said that tying a scarf around your face can be a last resort for those who can't get their hands on masks or aren't able to make one.
Now, that's not saying if you're sick you can leave home.
In my opinion, you don't need a mask with really good social distancing (staying at least six feet away from others) when you are outdoors.
But first, if you are feeling confused about the "should I wear a mask or not" messaging, you're not alone. But the country with the most reported COVID-19 cases is the one that has repeatedly balked at recommending its citizens wear masks - the United States.
So, assuming your employees and friends aren't healthcare workers on the front lines of the pandemic, they may not be able to buy masks, and you may not be able to buy masks for them.
President Trump agreeing with the idea but doesn't want competition with hospitals for medical supplies. However, he said the small supply of masks in the country meant only people on the frontline should acquire them.