Universal masking lowers COVID-19 infections among healthcare workers, Harvard study finds

From March 17 to April 1 (five days after Cambridge Health Alliance executed universal masking), COVID-19 infections amongst healthcare employees at the health system were increasing at the exact same, relative steep rate as that of the surrounding neighborhood. After the masking intervention April 1-20, Cambridge Health Alliance reduced and flattened its curve significantly, while community infections continued to rise until Massachusetts reached its COVID-19 incidence peak on April 20, scientists stated. Both infection rates declined at comparable rates after the rise peaked in Massachusetts April 20.

Kelly Gooch –
Wednesday, October 21st, 2020

Universal masking at a Massachusetts health system led to a decrease in COVID-19 cases amongst health care workers, even as the virus spread increased in the surrounding community, according to a research study released Oct. 21 by Occupational Medicine.

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The study– led by researchers at Cambridge (Mass.) Health Alliance, a Harvard-affiliated community health system, and the Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health– compared COVID-19 infection rates between Cambridge Health Alliance and Massachusetts citizens. The study period was March 17, when the first health system staff member tested favorable, to May 6, when Massachusetts began needing masking in public locations where social distancing isnt possible..

” We found clear advantages to universal masking for preventing transmittable spread within the work environment,” research study senior author Stefanos Kales, MD, division chief of ecological and occupational medicine at Cambridge Health Alliance and a teacher at both Harvard Medical School and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, concluded. “Our findings suggest that a universal masking policy needs to be executed and preserved in health care settings in addition to within indoor companies when physical distancing and ventilation may be insufficient.”.