Two people wearing face masks in public while practicing social distancing.

“It’s the best thing we know we can do right now” – Mercy Health Expert Discusses the Importance of Wearing Face Masks

Jul 27 2020

Anne Macy DNP, NP-C, CIC is the system director for infection prevention at Mercy Health and has been a key point person in our ministry’s response to COVID-19 since the end of January.

“It’s been a roller coaster,” shares Anne. “Cases have largely been market by market. For example, early on in the pandemic, we saw lots of action in our Great Lakes region.”

As time goes on, the medical community learns more about this new virus. This includes the ways it spreads, as well as the ways it can be treated. Even more important, they are learning how the general public can help prevent community spread of COVID-19.

“Wearing a face covering in public is a critical and important prevention measure. It’s the best thing we know we can do right now,” Anne states. “This is because there are many asymptomatic individuals who are still able to unknowingly spread this virus to other people.”

While there is information out there downplaying the importance of wearing face masks at this time, Anne says clinical evidence suggests otherwise.

“We currently know this virus is transmitting through respiratory drops. Based on conversations with my colleagues in the medical community and the literature I’ve read, there is no doubt that wearing face masks is effective in reducing the transmission of COVID-19.”

Efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 don’t end with covering your face. There are many preventative measures Anne encourages the general public to practice.

“Wearing a face mask, practicing physical distancing from others and practicing proper hand hygiene are the top three critical preventative measures everyone should be doing at this time.”

Anne acknowledges that younger people are at low risk of becoming severely ill from COVID-19. However, she emphasizes it is just as important for them to wear face masks in public as it is for a high-risk individual.

“Exposing yourself to this virus not only puts yourself at risk, it puts everyone you interact with at risk too. This includes your family, friends and coworkers,” she says.

Anne is very proud of Mercy Heath’s response to this pandemic, and she feels it is our responsibility to provide the public with this important clinical information.

“As a Catholic ministry, we are committed to caring for the common good of everyone we serve. This includes encouraging masking and physical distancing in our communities to keep them safe.”

This is a critical time for our country. It is important for everyone to wear face masks in public at this time. This simple action can and will help save lives.   

Stay updated on what Mercy Health is doing related to COVID-19.

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Anna Davis

It's good to know that masks reduce the transmission of the virus by blocking respiratory drops. While I have been socially distancing for the past six months, I need to go out of town this weekend for my grandmother's funeral. I will be sure to pick up some face masks to wear whenever I'm in public or around other people.
September 29th, 2020 | 10:25am

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