Ways to make your own face mask since health officials are giving new advice to wear them in public

4 4 MASK MOREVentura County Public Health Officer Dr. Robert Levin said he supports residents who wish to cover their nose and mouth when leaving home for essential travel to doctor appointments, grocery shopping or pharmacy visits.

 He said that the face coverings should not be hospital grade at this time because there is a shortage and our health professionals need them. Masks should be homemade and cover the nose and mouth.

 There are numerous sites online which demonstrate or give patterns for how to make fabric masks. The Camarillo Sewing Brigade provides video instruction at the following link:


Additional instruction at the following link:


Fabric masks can be washed and used again.


Here is a link to making a no-sewing required face mask with just  a handkerchief and hair ties:



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 4 3 MASK"There is growing evidence that people can have COVID-19 without any symptoms and that they can pass it to others at this stage" Levin said. "Many people wear masks thinking it will protect them from a virus, and in certain cases it may. That may also be true for COVID-19, especially if accompanied by good hand hygiene and social distancing, but now there may be a better reason to wear a mask; it will decrease the chance of you spreading it to someone else if you have the infection asymptomatically.” 


This is particularly important if decreasing spread means not infecting a senior or someone with other chronic conditions, Levin said.
It is imperative, though, that the use of masks by members of the public not contribute to the shortage of personal protective equipment needed by first responders like health care workers, he said. If someone chooses to wear a mask in public, it should be home made, at least until there is no more shortage.
“Covering your face doesn’t change the orders everyone must abide by to stay home as much as possible and maintain social distancing, but it’s an extra layer of protection that I think is reasonable to add.”
The rationale for covering one’s face comes from the belief that transmission occurs primarily through droplets from an infected individual, which fabrics may filter. This not only helps to reduce the risk a well person can breathe those droplets in, but also protects others around someone with mild or no symptoms who may not yet realize they have the COVID-19 infection. Face coverings may be worn anytime a person is outside of their home, even in offices of essential businesses.
“We must work together to stop the spread and save lives in our county,” Levin said. “That means that flattening the curve may benefit from another layer of protection against the virus. Consider the additional step to cover your face.” Health officials continue to stress that frequent hand washing, social distancing and staying home are the best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Stay in your place, maintain your space and cover your face.



4 1 face makssIn addition to Dr. Levin's advice, California’s public health officials also released guidance on the use of cloth face coverings to protect against COVID-19 for those who must leave their homes to conduct essential activities.


The guidance does not require people to wear face coverings  and is not a substitute for the state’s current guidance regarding social distancing and hand washing. The state also does not recommend Californians use N-95 or surgical masks, which are needed for our health care workers and first responders who will be there for when our lives at risk.

“Face coverings are not a substitute for physical distancing or frequent hand washing, which we know are amongst the most effective ways to reduce the spread of COVID-19,” said Dr. Sonia Angell, director of the California Department of Public Health and State Health officer. “Wearing a cloth face covering could provide some additional benefit by acting as a reminder for other people to keep their distance, and it could help reduce the spread of infectious particles from those who could be infected but don’t have symptoms.”

“Face coverings could provide some additional protection against COVID-19, but Californians should not have a false sense of security if they choose to wear them. Make sure you’re also staying 6 feet away from other people if you have to leave your home to get groceries or prescriptions,” said California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly.

The new guidance reminds Californians that the best defense against COVID-19 continues to be:

Staying at home and physical distancing
Washing hands frequently
Avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
Avoiding being around sick people

The use of cloth face coverings could reduce the transmission of COVID-19 by individuals who do not have symptoms and may reinforce physical distancing. Public health officials also caution that face coverings may increase risk if users reduce their use of strong defenses such as physical distancing and frequent hand washing.

A link to the new guidance is on the California Department of Public Health’s website: 












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