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Mask sharing a serious concern

Mask sharing a serious concern

Marthina Mutanga

NAMIBIANS have been advised against sharing masks after it was found that some people pass masks amongst themselves to avoid being fined for not adhering to State of Emergency regulations when out in public.


Technical Medical Officer, Quality Assurance Division at the Centre for Disease Control in Namibia, Dr. Apollo Basenero, while speaking at the National COVID-19 Information Centre on guidelines of mask usage, noted that exchanging masks comes with many risks because no one knows who might have been infected with the coronavirus.


During Stage 2 of the State of Emergency, the wearing of masks is mandatory in public places where social distancing is sometimes hard to control.


MASK PROBLEMS: Unavailability of masks, coupled with lack of resources to purchase face masks has resulted in some people rewashing disposed and sharing face masks when in public. Photo: Contributed


According to Dr Basenero, it was found that some people pass masks from one person to the next before entering shops where they often cannot gain entry without a mask.


“There is the fear that people may end up re-using disposable masks, which are unhygienic, or use inferior masks sold on the black market,” Dr Basenero said.


Deputy health minister, Dr Esther Muinjangue, also announced that registered COVID-19 cases still stand at 16, 11 recoveries, 5 active cases which are all asymptomatic, and 0 deaths.


In addition, 242 people have been identified for coming into contact with active COVID-19 cases, while a total 526 people have been placed in quarantine countrywide.


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