Wear A Mask!

Originally, this was going to appear as part of Parse Farce, but just seemed too out-of-context. In addition, while more Americans than ever have finally assimilated the message about wearing masks, I thought this material, almost all of which is from elsewhere, was worth sharing.

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From this article:

 

“On January 24th, Singapore became the first country to mandate mask wearing for all citizens. In February, the CDC and WHO advised ‘masks do not benefit average citizens.’  April 24, the CDC advised wearing a mask to ‘protect other people.’ In June, that changed to ‘wear a mask only if you cannot socially distance.’  Singapore has 27 deaths; we [the US] have 163,000 as of this writing.”

“In May 2020, scientists in Hong Kong circulated air from COVID-19 infected hamsters into cages holding healthy hamsters. 75% of the healthy hamsters developed COVID-19. The scientists then filtered the air through surgical mask material. The infection rate in these hamsters plummeted to 25%. They had milder illnesses, and their body burden of virus was a thousand times less.  Masking led to less virus, fewer and less severe infections and fewer deaths.”

“In April 2020, there were COVID-19 outbreaks on two cruise ships. Cruise ships are hamster cages for people. The Diamond Princess, off Japan, did not have masks for all the passengers. Among passengers testing positive, 82% fell ill. The same month, COVID-19 also broke out on the Greg Mortimer cruise ship, off Argentina. Masks were distributed to all passengers when the first case was diagnosed. Among passengers testing positive, only 19% fell ill. Masks were responsible for a 75% decrease in illness. What works for hamsters works for people.”

Here is the summary of a study published in May and shown on the website of the National Institutes of Health (NIH):

 

“Results: A total of 21 studies met our inclusion criteria. Meta-analyses suggest that mask use provided a significant protective effect. Use of masks by healthcare workers (HCWs) and non-healthcare workers (Non-HCWs) can reduce the risk of respiratory virus infection by 80% and 47%…Masks had a protective effect against influenza viruses, SARS, and SARS-CoV-2. In the subgroups based on different study designs, protective effects of wearing masks were significant in cluster randomized trials and observational studies.”

 

In the interest of full disclosure I excluded data such as (OR = 0.35 and 95% CI = 0.24-0.51) from the summary because I don’t want to turn this post into a statistics lesson.

Sorry, but I’m kind of inflexible on this issue. Masks work and not to wear one for political reasons is foolish and selfish. Unconstrained freedom is not freedom, it’s anarchy. Yes, I also believe public school systems have the right to deny access to unfortunate children whose moronic parents don’t have them vaccinated. NO ONE has the right to make other people sick without their informed consent.

Good, I’ve stepped on some toes today.

 

#WearAMask!

#disaffectedmusings

 

12 thoughts on “Wear A Mask!

  1. This is one topic I cannot discuss without losing my mind. The U.S. response to this on every level has been like that of toddler who sticks their fingers in their ears and go “blah blah blah!” To see some of the best minds in medicine become blathering idiots is painful, but less so than seeing someone I know die of the disease.

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    1. Thanks, Doc. Someone in my family has succumbed to this virus. Two other good friends, a husband and wife, both contracted it and she was very ill.

      In the interest of full disclosure, David Banner (not his real name) used to be a physician in the US. He gave up his business for reasons he might share with us someday.

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  2. I’ll indulge you. Part of the reason was that five physicians between 40-49 died of heart attacks/stress within five months of each other. Two died while jogging. I couldn’t see myself working to get to be a doc and dying so young. Second, too many of my colleagues didn’t give an F at the time. I would try to get a consult and either could not get one or the specialist knew less than I did. Third, my practice nearly broke me. My staff was lazy and would not schedule patients do they could go home, or they would not file claims. When I closed my office, patients owed me $13K in co-pays and insurance companies $50K, of which I recovered $0. Last but not least, one of my offices was in a bad part of town. One year we had 17” of snow. I had to go shovel my own sidewalk. While out in the snow, a half block away-in broad daylight-two guys decided to have a gunfight.
    Ultimately, I could not see sacrificing my children’s well-being and my sanity.
    Going into pharma has given me the financial stability and intellectual satisfaction I never had in private practice. I weep for our healthcare system.

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      1. Do you mean struggling to survive? Not rare, but most PCPs are in groups or are employed, so they have some “herd immunity”. But many physicians are either treading water or are trying to get out. I now make more in pharma than many in certain specialties.

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  3. You are too right. Around here there is a fine to pay when caught without a mask. Yet I never saw an officer of any sort fining people. And too many use excuses like – I’m running/walking/cycling/walking the dog – meaning Sports – which is still mask-free as far as I know. Or the ones with masks under chin or in hand… like the new accessory… I can’t understand them.

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