CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in stores
Amid COVID-19 concerns, a woman wears a bandana as she makes her way to catch a bus in Dallas on Friday.(LM Otero/AP)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday said it now recommends people wear cloth face coverings when in stores and other tight public places.
Announcing the new guidance, the CDC said it was making its recommendation in consideration of evidence that a large share of people who contract COVID-19 don’t exhibit symptoms.
Health officials noted that the recommended coverings are not surgical face masks or N95 respirators, which are in short supply at many hospitals amid the crisis.
The CDC described the new advisory as voluntary. People should still keep six feet of distance between each other to curb the spread of the virus.
Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the CDC, said this week that it’s possible 25% of people who contract COVID-19 are asymptomatic. And testing in Iceland has indicated that 50% of cases there may not carry symptoms.
The worldwide count of confirmed coronavirus cases has eclipsed 1 million, with more than 275,000 in the U.S., according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. The global death toll has eclipsed 50,000.