The Deputy General Secretary for the Ghana Medical Association has cautioned Ghanaians on the use and re-use of face masks by a cross-section of the public to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
According to Dr Titus Beyuo, the masks can serve as a reservoir for bacteria and the virus if they are not used properly.
“I have observed how people use the masks and it is very dangerous. The golden rule is, it must be on or off, not hanging. Hanging defeats the entire purpose of the masks,” he explained on Newsfile, Saturday.
He told Samson Lardi Anyenini, host of the show, that when people wearing masks have others speaking so close to them, the front part of the masks gets contaminated.
Hence removing the mask to let it hang on the chest spreads whatever bacteria or virus is on it, which in turn exposes the inner surface of the mask.
Dr Beyuo said, “a mask gives a sense of false security if not used well and it actually can be more harmful to you.”
“If you’re using the same mask for a week, pulling up and down refixing it and using your hand on it all the time then it traps a lot of organisms and even this coronavirus and eventually you just infect yourself.”
He urged people to know the kind of mask they have and use them properly. He stated that disposable masks should be done away with immediately after use.
He proceeded to demonstrate how reusable clinical masks should be used adding that they could be kept in a plastic bowl with the inner face down.