Here's How We Get Virus Under Control in 8 Weeks — CDC Chief

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Cloth face coverings "help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the cloth face covering coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice".

CDC's appeal came days after U.S. President Donald Trump wore a mask publicly for the first time when visiting a hospital in Maryland.

A top CDC scientist in charge of collecting and analyzing COVID-19 data from hospitals says the new reporting system ignores the agency's valuable expertise and disrupts CDC's decades-long relationships with hospitals.

"Historically, CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] has been the place where public health data has been sent, and this raises questions about not just access for researchers but access for reporters, access for the public to try to better understand what is happening with the outbreak", said Jen Kates, the director of global health and HIV policy with the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation, in a comment to The New York Times.

Director of the CDC, Dr. Robert Redfield said cloth face coverings are one of the most powerful weapons to slow and stop the spread of the virus. Both stylists wore double-layered cloth face coverings or surgical masks when seeing clients. This number rose to 76.4% a month later.

In an online interview with the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), a medical publication, Redfield said that if all Americans wore a mask, the rising cases of COVID-19 could be under control in a matter of weeks.

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Still, having everyone wear a mask in this kind of setting helps prevent infected customers from passing the virus to other customers or staff if the situation is reversed, he said.

"Covering mouths and noses with filtering materials serves two purposes: personal protection against inhalation of harmful pathogens and particulates, and source control to prevent exposing others to infectious microbes that may be expelled during respiration", the authors wrote.

Trump had long refused to wear a mask, even mocking his Democratic presidential rival Joe Biden for wearing one during a Memorial Day ceremony. So wearing a mask is important.

CDC officials also wrote in an editorial on Tuesday that cloth face coverings were vital to fighting coronavirus, and could be particularly effective when all members of a community wore them.

According to a new Hill-HarrisX poll, 44 percent of voters said people were less likely to wear masks when Trump had not set an example by wearing a mask to lower the spread of COVID-19.

"In the absence of such data, it has been persuasively argued the precautionary principle be applied to promote community masking because there is little to lose and potentially much to be gained", the CDC said.

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