Gillian Martin, MSP has welcomed new guidance on facial coverings as evidence suggests homemade masks can help reduce the risk of community transition of coronavirus.
The North-east MSP questioned the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport Jeane Freeman today during portfolio questions on her response to other countries making face coverings mandatory particularly as lockdown measures ease.
While physical distancing, hand washing and respiratory hygiene remain the most important and effective measures we can adopt to prevent the spread of coronavirus, the Cabinet Secretary issued new advice urging people to wear homemade coverings voluntarily in addition to social distancing.
As some people can have the virus but experience no symptoms, wearing a face covering in situations such as shopping in local supermarkets and on public transport may provide some level of protection against transmission to other people in close proximity.
Welcoming the guidance, Gillian Martin MSP said
This new Scottish Government advice on facial coverings is very welcome and is something that I’ve been calling for clarity on.
Covering your nose and mouth with even the most available of materials like scarves and handkerchiefs can help to contain droplets. This move will help support our national response and reduce community transition of the virus and I know it has been effective in other countries.
Many people won’t know they are carrying the virus if they aren’t showing symptoms and so this is yet another way we can protect the public as we go to supermarkets and use public transport.
The Aberdeenshire East representative went on to add
Of course facial coverings can only be part of the solution and are a precautionary measure, the current rules on social distancing remain the most important.
However, in addition to this, I know how much comfort I have found in wearing my homemade mask which I created from the material from a vacuum cleaner bag and elastic.
I would strongly urge others to start wearing facial coverings if they can when out and about- every little helps as we look to tackle the virus and reduce the spread.
You can read the Scottish Government guidance on face coverings on the scot.gov website.