People in Melbourne must now wear masks when leaving their homes as Victoria marked two weeks of triple-digit increases in new coronavirus infections on Sunday.
Melbournians not wearing face coverings will be fined $200, said Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews.
Dr Nick Coatsworth, Australia’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer, said the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) adjusted its advice and now recommends wearing a mask in areas where community transmission is on the rise.
Face covers are already mandatory on public transport in counties like England and Scotland, and mandatory in shops in England, too – so it’s a good idea to get up to speed on why we’re wearing them and how we can do so as comfortably as possible.
From knowing how to fit one properly, to tips and tricks for avoiding fogging up your glasses, here are seven things you should know.
1. Wearing a face cover protects other people.
Face covers protect other people from your germs. As Professor Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, explained: “Wearing a face covering is an added precaution that may have some benefit in reducing the likelihood that a person with the infection passes it on.”
And Paul Edelstein, professor of pathology and laboratory medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, said: “The evidence for the benefit of wearing face coverings in protecting others from infection is becoming clearer all the time.”
Face covers are key to reducing the virus’ spread among asymptomatic individuals (people who don’t have any symptoms). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US estimated that just over a third (35%) of Covid-19 infections are symptomless. Meanwhile a study of 9,000 people in Iceland found 50% of them were asymptomatic.
Studies from cruise ships suggest that figure could be even higher. Almost three quarters (72%) of people on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship who had Covid-19 were thought to have been...