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CBS Responds to Face Mask Recommendation for General Public

CBS President and retired Consultant Colorectal Surgeon Professor John Macfie said:

“The Confederation of British Surgery is aware that the British Medical Association (BMA) has made recommendations that the general public should wear face masks when outside of the home. Clearly, it is a matter of personal choice what protective equipment is used by those not working in high risk areas. However, the BMA's advice should be taken with a few health warnings.

“Face masks may give the wearer an undue sense of false security. Face masks do not preclude the need for careful and scrupulous hand hygiene – and are rendered useless if the wearer keeps touching the mask or face underneath and then goes on to touch nearby objects. Face masks are useless if wet and should not be shared or reused. Most importantly the scientific evidence that face masks prevent dissemination of viruses is lacking and this is almost certainly because the vast majority of masks available to the public have a pore size which is too large to filter out virus particles.

“Keep washing your hands, do not touch your face,  maintain social distancing and, if you can, avoid high risk areas like hospitals and nursing homes.”


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