DOST-PTRI and DOH-PHST Recommend Minimum Specifications for Non-medical Face Masks for Community Use
DOST-Philippine Textile Research Institute and the DOH-Public Health Services Team, tasked by an Inter-Agency Task Force composed of the DTI, TESDA, DBM, DILG and other Agencies, established the minimum specifications for non-medical cloth face masks for community use. These minimum specifications are based on the World Health Organization's (WHO) recommendations, recent studies conducted by the Institute, and published researches of international research and development institutions and organizations. Guidance on additional tests to ensure safety and protection was also included as part of recommendations.
The use of masks is part of the prevention and control measures that can limit the spread of certain respiratory diseases like COVID-19. Other measures include proper handwashing, physical distancing, and respiratory hygiene. Masks can be used for the protection of healthy persons to protect oneself when in contact with an infected individual and worn by an infected individual to prevent onward transmission.
The established minimum specifications of non-medical face masks can be used as a reference by mask producers, suppliers, buyers, and the users in deciding the appropriate products for use to ensure a minimum level of protection for non-medical masks for community use.
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To validate whether the minimum specifications are met, textile materials and face masks should be tested.