COVID-19 – Your Mask Is Useless, and You’re Using it Wrong

Disclaimer: the information contained within this article was gathered from the following sources:


Passengers arrive at Beijing railway station to board trains before Spring Festival. Beijing, China. 23 January 2020. Photo: Kevin Frayer/Getty Images.

Hong Kongers are obsessed with face masks. Since the outbreak of SARS in 2002-2003, which killed 299 people in Hong Kong and 349 people in China, it is not uncommon to see people wearing surgical masks in the streets, in shopping malls, or at work. Although omnipresent since the outbreak of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), its folkloric value is inversely proportional to its capacity to prevent anyone from being infected with… well, pretty much any infectious disease.

And yet… In Hong Kong, people believe that surgical masks will protect them from the flu, or even from 2019-nCoV. Walk around the streets of Hong Kong without a mask in times of an epidemic like SARS or 2019-nCoV, and traffic on the sidewalk will open up in front of you like the Red See in front of Moses. You will be treated as if you had the plague.

Paradoxically, though, you’ll be as likely to catch any infectious disease -flu, coronavirus, or other- as anyone else on the street who is wearing a surgical mask. Better, you’ll probably be less likely to be infected with the virus, in fact, since people –i.e. potential virus carriers- will walk away from you.

Now, if you paid attention to the words I used so far, you’ll have noticed that I’m only mentioning surgical masks. You know, those cheap masks, usually blue or green, that you see everywhere in Hong Kong. Well, those masks are useless against 2019-nCoV. And for three reasons.

Surgical mask

First off, surgical masks are loose-fitting. Try as you might, you will never obtain a perfect seal around your mouth and nose with a surgical mask. This allows smaller airborne droplets, which may -or may not- carry viruses, to find their way through gaps between the mask and you skin, and into your respiratory system, hence infecting you even though you are wearing a surgical mask.

As a matter of fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that the surgical mask “(d)oes NOT provide the wearer with a reliable level of protection from inhaling smaller airborne particles and is not considered respiratory protection”[1].

One could argue, though, that surgical masks may be useful in case an infected person coughs directly in your face. Although incredibly rude, it happens (this is Hong Kong, after all). And in such case, a surgical mask may offer some protection against splashes of fluids and larger droplets.

However, one must bear in mind the mode of transmission of coronaviruses. And 2019-nCoV, as most human coronaviruses, spreads from an infected person to another through the air (coughing or sneezing), through fecal contamination (albeit rarely), or through contact (direct or indirect) between a contaminated surface and your mouth, nose, or eyes. Yes, you could also get infected with 2019-nCoV through the eyes.

Now, let’s bring back that infected person coughing directly in your face. In such a scenario, wearing a surgical mask would help prevent contamination directly through the respiratory system. It wouldn’t protect you from a contamination through the eyes, though.

But why would you listen to me? What are my credentials? And you’d be right to call my words into question. As you should have with the information you read so far concerning… well, everything concerning 2019-nCoV. Anyway, let’s see what a specialist in infectious diseases has to say about the surgical mask:

“Surgical masks are just a physical barrier that will protect you against “a visible splash or spray of fluid or large droplets,” explains Raina MacIntyre, an infectious disease researcher and professor of global biosecurity at the University of New South Wales in Sydney who has studied the efficacy of face masks. These masks fit loosely on the face around the edges, so they don’t completely keep out germs, and small airborne particles can still get through.”[2]

And if those two reasons regarding the uselessness of wearing a surgical mask were not enough, let’s hit the nail in the coffin. And that nail is none other than… you. Yes, you, the person wearing a surgical mask. You’re using your mask improperly. So improperly, in fact, that in the event wearing a surgical mask would be useful, your misuse of said mask would render it ineffective and, in some cases, even more dangerous. Let’s give a look at a few very common examples of misuse of surgical masks.

And we’ll start at the beginning: your hands. Ask yourself the following simple question. Do you wash your hands before handling the mask you’re about to put on your face? No? Well, there you have it, thousands -if not millions- of potentially dangerous bacteria being transferred from your hands to the mask that you’re going to breathe through for a couple of hours. Right from the get-go, you’ve contaminated your mask.

And when you remove your mask, do you wash your hands immediately afterward? No? And there you have it again! All the bacteria the outer part of your mask has been collecting while you were wearing it have now transferred onto your hands. Make sure you don’t touch your face before you’ve washed your hands.

In the same vein, you’ll often see people at the restaurant lowering their mask while eating. They’ll be handling cutlery, chopsticks, plates, glasses, and other objects bacteria often transit on; as well as touch the table that has been haphazardly cleaned with a dirty piece of cloth. Once done with their meal, they’ll put their mask back on their face, even before they took the time to wash their hands.

Better still, people lowering their masks to smoke a cigarette. Every time they’ll take a drag on their cigarette, their hands -common vectors of bacteria- will come in contact with their mouth, increasing the chances for viruses to penetrate their respiratory system. But, don’t worry, they’ll put their mask back on as soon as they are done smoking.

The most disturbing misuse of surgical masks probably comes at the hands of children. And it is their very parents and teachers who teach them this terrifyingly disgusting, and dangerous habit. I have stopped counting the number of times I have seen parents tell their children to put their mask in their pocket before taking a picture, or before mealtime. And put it back on their faces afterward (without washing their hands, obviously).

In their pocket! Seriously? One of the nastiest breeding grounds for bacteria of all sorts one can imagine. Think about all the things you put in your pockets. Now think about all the things you used to put in your pockets when you were a child. And imagine all the bacteria that transit through children’s pockets and eventually end up on their masks. Parents -and teachers- couldn’t help viruses infect their children better; the very children they wanted to protect with those masks in the first place.

Now, if you still believe wearing a surgical mask may help prevent the transmission of infectious diseases, using your mask properly would be the least you could do. In Hong Kong, the Centre for Health Protection published a guide on how to use your surgical mask properly. You will find the English version of the guide here and the Chinese version here.

You will note that the document starts by stating that “(p)eople should wear a surgical mask when they have respiratory infection; when taking care of patient with respiratory infection; or when visiting clinics or hospitals during pandemic or peak season for influenza in order to reduce the spread of infection.”[3] Nowhere does it mention that healthy people should wear a surgical mask outside of hospitals. Just saying.

In fact, and it may sound counterintuitive, the only people who should wear a surgical mask are the people who are already infected. Whatever the disease they are infected with. And they should wear a mask to avoid spreading germs around them; because they are the very people who could prevent the further spreading of viruses.

Anyway. So far, we have established that surgical masks were useless -for healthy people- in case of an epidemic or pandemic. Or in any other case, really. How about other types of masks? Since the outbreak of 2019-nCoV, we often hear/read about the N95 respirator (also known as FFP2 in Europe) in the news. Does it offer any better protection against 2019-nCoV than the surgical mask?

N95 respirator

First and foremost, to understand what we are talking about, it is necessary to understand the differences between the surgical mask, on the one hand, and the N95 respirator, on the other hand. And it so happens that CDC made a comparison between both types of masks, which is available here.

As opposed to the surgical mask, the N95 respirator is a tight-fitting mask; fitting around your nose, mouth, and part of your chin. To be legally allowed to bear the mention N95 (in the United States), a respirator must be tested and approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). And the mention 95 indicates that it “(f)ilters out at least 95% of airborne particles including large and small particles”[4].

This means that, as opposed to the surgical mask, the N95 respirator will prevent you from inhaling the majority of smaller airborne droplets. Similarly to the surgical mask, though, the N95 will not be of any help against airborne viruses that may land in your eyes.

Again, however, to be effective, the N95 respirator must be used properly. CDC’s recommendations on how to use the N95 respirator in case of a pandemic can be found here. And, although nearly identical (obviously), Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection also published its recommendations on the proper use of the N95 respirator, which can be found here (English) or here (Chinese).

Now, as we saw, the surgical mask is completely useless against 2019-nCoV, and the efficiency of the N95 respirator is rather limited -even though not inexistent. And this means that people wearing a mask are, paradoxically, extra dangerous. Indeed, contrary to people who do not wear a mask, people wearing masks may feel protected when, in fact, they are not. And this means they may be -and are- more careless.

Observe people wearing a mask in the street, and you will notice that they touch things with their hands, then touch their mask or face without washing their hands. They remove their masks on a whim, then put them back on, very often without washing their hands. Each one of those -seemingly- insignificant actions increases the possibility of an infection; be it 2019-nCoV, influenza, or any other virus.

So, what to do if masks are useless? How to prevent infection? Well, simply follow the specialists’ advice. Do what you should have done before paranoia struck Hong Kong: find reliable information. No, no, no, not on Facebook, you idiot! You’ll end up believing face masks are enough to prevent infections. Oh, wait, you did that already.

Joking aside, get reliable information about 2019-nCoV where reliable information about the disease resides. You can start locally with the Centre for Health Protection (CHP; Hong Kong) or the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID; Singapore). Or, you can get your information from one of the most reliable sources in the world, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC; United States). If you’re from the North, you’ll find information on the website of the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC; Canada). Or perhaps you prefer a European take on the situation? Well, you can always visit the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC; Europe). British? No problem, visit the National Health Service (NHS; United Kingdom). Tu ne comprends pas l’anglais? Alors visite le site de la Santé publique France (SfP; France) ou de l’Agence de la santé publique du Canada (ASPC; Canada). And if it’s international information you’re after, why not visit the website of the World Health Organisation (WHO, Global).

See, there is no shortage in reliable information sources. And, reading the information provided by the disease control agencies from around the world, you’ll notice one striking similarity between each and every one of those websites: the face mask. None of those organisations recommend the use of face masks other than for infected people or people who work in hospitals. Yet, in Hong Kong, and in many other parts of the world, you’ll be considered a madman if you dare leave your house without that piece of tissue in front of your mouth. Ah, lemmings sheep sheople intelligent people


[1] https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/pdfs/UnderstandDifferenceInfographic-508.pdf. Last retrieved on 30 January 2020.

[2] https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2020/01/29/800531753/face-masks-what-doctors-say-about-their-role-in-containing-coronavirus. Last retrieved on 31 January 2020.

[3] https://www.chp.gov.hk/files/pdf/use_mask_properly.pdf, p.1. Last retrieved on 31 January 2020.

[4] https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/pdfs/UnderstandDifferenceInfographic-508.pdf. Last retrieved on 30 January 2020.

51 thoughts on “COVID-19 – Your Mask Is Useless, and You’re Using it Wrong

  1. Agree with everything stated. However, as it has been shown that people have been infected during the incubation period (case in Germany where a girl from Wuhan attended a business meeting), I see a case where wearing a mask can lower the risk of spreading the virus, in case you unknowingly contracted the virus.

    But it’s probably overkill to enforce the whole population to wear face masks. I see a shortage of masks, and businesses are talking advantage of the situation and hiking prices. Friends are reusing cloth masks which gives zero protection, while I’m at my last few reserves which I’m saving to the airport.

    Like

    1. Gweilorant asked: “If the face mask (surgical mask or cloth mask) indeed offers efficient protection against Covid-19, why did all the governments in the world take economy-crippling measures instead of ordering factories on their territory to produce face masks?”

      Face masks are not so much to protect the wearer from getting infected, as much as preventing the wearer from spreading the disease if they are an asymptomatic carrier. 25-50% of COVID cases are asymptomatic carriers and don’t even know they are carrying it. They are still very contagious even while asymptomatic, which is why it’s important for everyone to wear face-masks.

      You are right, if everyone wore face masks, the risk of transmission would greatly reduce, obviating the need for extended indefinite periods of lockdowns. It’s a good idea to mandate face-masks for everyone so business can return to (relative) normalcy.

      Like

      1. It does not matter who is protected by the face mask. The fact is that governments around the world do not trust the face mask as efficient protection against Covid-19. If they believed the face mask offered decent protection against the spread of the virus, they would have made the face mask mandatory instead of destroying their economies with travel bans, confinements, or quarantines. Even better, if the face mask offered protection/prevented the spread of Covid-19, travel bans, confinements, and quarantines would not have been needed altogether.

        “You are right, if everyone wore face masks, the risk of transmission would greatly reduce”
        Yet, if we don’t take into account Hubei Province (the epicentre of the disease) in the PRC, Beijing Municipality, Shanghai Municipality, and Jiangxi Province recorded the highest incidence rates in the country. And Guangdong Province recorded the highest number of confirmed cases and the highest incidence rate of all provinces not bordering Hubei Province.
        Now, do you know what Beijing Municipality, Shanghai Municipality, Jiangxi Province and Guangdong Province have in common? Those are the only four Municipalities/Provinces (other than Hubei Province) in the PRC in which wearing a face mask was mandatory throughout the epidemic.

        Like

      2. Actually, Singaporeans DO NOT wear face masks in public, and Singapore’s record high incidence is due to a surge of cases in the migrant worker’s dormitories. 70% of Singapore’s cases are concentrated in the migrant worker’s dormitories, which (no shock) do not wear face masks.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2020/04/21/singapore-lost-control-its-coronavirus-outbreak-migrant-workers-are-victims/?arc404=true

        Even an indepth analysis on a country basis exposes your significant ignorance about the topic.

        Also, as Asian countries closing their borders to China. You know who else closed their border to China? Most of Europe and United States. The number of visitors from China to the US dropped down to ZERO, same for visitors from China to Europe, also down to ZERO. Yet, US and Europe constitutes the vast majority of infected cases.

        Even your logic is not consistent because Europe and US have travel bans from China too, not just HK, Macao, or other Asian nations.

        If you attribute “Freedom” to why it’s difficult to prevent spread of virus, then why does South Korea (Democracy), Japan (Democracy), Hong Kong, and Macao (high degree of freedom) all have significantly less infections per capita and mortality per capita compared to US and European democracies? Even if you use your logic consistently, you will see it’s not about “travel bans” (Europe/US has travel bans from China), or “freedom” (many Asian countries have democracy and freedom), or even “lockdowns” (US and Europe and Asian countries have similar “lockdown-lites”).

        The biggest difference between US and Europe and Asian nations is they have a culture of face-mask wearing, which significantly reduces the risk of transmission of disease due to asymptomatic carriers who are highly contagious are unable to spread it while wearing a mask.

        Most of the arguments you made have been destroyed and is inconsistent with the facts.

        Like

      3. “Actually, Singaporeans DO NOT wear face masks in public”
        Perhaps you should have read this article before commenting. Not only do they wear face masks, but Singapore is one of the very few countries in which it is COMPULSORY!
        https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/health-environment/article/3079889/coronavirus-singapore-makes-face-masks-compulsory
        Or let’s see what the Singapore Ministry of Health has to say about the face mask.
        https://www.gov.sg/article/when-should-i-wear-a-mask
        And look what happens when you don’t wear a face mask in Singapore.
        https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/southeast-asia/article/3082883/im-sovereign-singapore-woman-who-refused-wear-face-mask
        What does Statista have to say about the Singaporeans use of face masks? “90 percent of Singaporean respondents stated that they were wearing face masks when in public places during the COVID-19 outbreak.”
        https://www.statista.com/statistics/1110983/singapore-wearing-masks-during-covid-19-outbreak/
        So, are you still claiming Singaporeans don’t wear face masks? See, that’s the difference between basing your claims on your beliefs, and basing your claims on actual research.

        “and Singapore’s record high incidence is due to a surge of cases in the migrant worker’s dormitories.”
        Perhaps you should re-read my analysis of the spread of the Covid-19 epidemic in Hong Kong, Macau, and Singapore. Singapore recorded a higher incidence rate than the rest of Asia LOOONG before that surge in the dormitories you mention. As a matter of fact, the surge in Covid-19 cases in migrant workers’ dormitories started precisely on 26 March 2020. Yet Singapore had been recording the highest incidence rate in Asia (behind the PRC and South Korea) since… 28 January 2020. That is, two months earlier. So, blaming the migrant workers for the high incidence rates in Singapore (relative to the rest of Asia) doesn’t work. And those figures come directly from the Singapore Ministry of Health. I mean, it’s great you’re doing some research, rwat1. But, please dig a bit deeper next time. I’ve been reading pretty much everything I could lay my hands on concerning the epidemic for the last five months. Do you seriously think I would have fallen for such a lazy argument?

        “Also, as Asian countries closing their borders to China. You know who else closed their border to China? Most of Europe and United States. The number of visitors from China to the US dropped down to ZERO, same for visitors from China to Europe, also down to ZERO. Yet, US and Europe constitutes the vast majority of infected cases.”
        You are right. But, again, dig deeper. When did the Covid-19 epidemic get out of hand in Europe? Around 26 February 2020. And when did the EU close its borders? In Mid-March 2020. More than two weeks later. That was, a little too late.

        https://euobserver.com/coronavirus/147742

        Now, the epicenter of the outbreak in Europe was in Northern Italy. And do you know what the initial Covid-19 cases in Italy had in common? Wuhan and the PRC. “Solo giovedì 19, quando sono esplosi i problemi respiratori, la moglie si è ricordata degli incontri con un amico italiano rientrato dalla Cina il 21 gennaio.” Google-translate this.
        https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2020/02/26/news/codogno_i_medici_dell_ospedale_in_trincea_quelle_accuse_del_premier_fanno_piu_male_della_malattia_-249593374/?refresh_ce

        Do you want to hear a funny coincidence? Italy banned flights with the PRC on 31 January 2020… that is, ten days after that friend got back from the PRC. And yes, it is those delayed travel-restrictions imposed on the PRC that enabled Covid-19 to penetrate Europe.
        https://www.forbes.com/sites/davekeating/2020/03/12/italy-banned-flights-from-china-before-americait-didnt-work/#3012cb61481b

        Now, when it comes to New York, the most heavily hit city in the US, the outbreak originates from Europe, not the PRC. And that is exactly what I was trying to explain to you. Contrary to Asian countries, banning entry to Chinese visitors in the West was not sufficient since, by the time the epidemic hit the West, it had already hit large parts of the world and reached the West via other parts of the world. Again, dig a bit deeper.
        https://abcnews.go.com/Health/york-coronavirus-outbreak-originated-europe-study-finds/story?id=70062642

        https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-08/most-nyc-covid-19-cases-came-from-europe-genome-researchers-say

        “Even your logic is not consistent because Europe and US have travel bans from China too, not just HK, Macao, or other Asian nations.”
        Please kindly refer to the few lines preceding this superb example of lack of research. And again, you didn’t understand what I explained. By 26 February 2020, when the epidemic got out of hand in the West, barring entry to travelers coming from the PRC alone was not enough.

        “If you attribute “Freedom” to why it’s difficult to prevent spread of virus, then why does South Korea (Democracy), Japan (Democracy), Hong Kong, and Macao (high degree of freedom) all have significantly less infections per capita and mortality per capita compared to US and European democracies?”
        Are you stupid? Or are you just being disingenuous? Since when does democracy equate to freedom? Can you freely enter Japan? Or South Korea? Or Hong Kong? No! In Europe, you can freely travel from Portugal all the way to Finland or from Sicily (Italy) to the North Cape (Norway) without ever encountering a border control. You know, because of that thing called the Schengen Agreement. In the United States you can travel from California to Maine or from Washington State to Florida without encountering the least control. In Canada you can travel from Nova Scotia to Yukon without encountering the least control (until the outbreak of the epidemic, that is). So, yes, the virus can spread much more easily all over the West than in Asia. Are you even trying to use your brain?

        “Even if you use your logic consistently, you will see it’s not about “travel bans” (Europe/US has travel bans from China), or “freedom” (many Asian countries have democracy and freedom), or even “lockdowns” (US and Europe and Asian countries have similar “lockdown-lites”).”
        Dig deeper, rwat1, dig deeper. And use your brain. And the argument of the Western travel bans on Chinese travelers is mute since the virus did not infect the West… directly from the PRC. You’d have known that if you had done some proper research instead of cherry-picking your sources.
        The one thing I will concede, here is that I haven’t been clear about the “freedom” I was referring to in my previous comment. I thought it was obvious that I wasn’t referring to freedom of speech, though, but to freedom of movement. And I would love to see you try traveling from Macau to Hong Kong without showing your passport. Or from South Korea to Taiwan without showing your passport. Good luck.

        “The biggest difference between US and Europe and Asian nations is they have a culture of face-mask wearing, which significantly reduces the risk of transmission of disease due to asymptomatic carriers who are highly contagious are unable to spread it while wearing a mask.”
        Ah yes, the thoroughly studied and analyzed “Asians wear face masks they are not infected; Westerners don’t wear face masks they are infected.”

        “Most of the arguments you made have been destroyed and is inconsistent with the facts.”
        Well, first you should have addressed my ACTUAL arguments if you wanted to destroy them. Second, uhm… your facts are rather flimsy and easily debunked with a five minute google-search. But you’re absolutely right, my arguments are inconsistent with your cherry-picked “facts”.

        Like

      4. The infection-rate per capita and mortality rate per capita is inversely related to the propensity of a society to wear face masks, assuming all else is equal (controlling for travel bans from China, lockdown-lites, and democratic freedoms).

        You can see democratic freedom nations like South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, all democratic nations with even looser lockdown restrictions than US/Europe), these societies have significantly lower infection rates per capita and mortality rate per capita than US and Europe.

        And yes, Europe/US have imposed travel bans from China too, imposed even MORE stricter lockdowns, and are also democratic free societies too.

        One big difference is their propensity to not use face-masks to control asymptomatic carriers who are contagious and unknowingly spread the virus.

        It takes some massive go to dismiss the world’s biggest experiment with some mental gymnastics on “face masks” don’t work. The results speak for themselves.

        Like

      5. “The infection-rate per capita and mortality rate per capita is inversely related to the propensity of a society to wear face masks, assuming all else is equal (controlling for travel bans from China, lockdown-lites, and democratic freedoms).”
        Priceless! Fucking priceless! Let’s turn the one variable that actually played a role in the spread (or containment) of the virus into a constant. Then the only remaining variable must be the one that explains the difference between Asia and the West. Just mind-blowing. Do you realize how weak your argument is?

        “You can see democratic freedom nations like South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, all democratic nations with even looser lockdown restrictions than US/Europe), these societies have significantly lower infection rates per capita and mortality rate per capita than US and Europe.”
        Are you stupid? Or are you just being disingenuous? Since when does democracy equate to freedom? Can you freely enter Japan? Or South Korea? Or Hong Kong? No! In Europe, you can freely travel from Portugal all the way to Finland or from Sicily (Italy) to the North Cape (Norway) without ever encountering a border control. You know, because of that thing called the Schengen Agreement. In the United States you can travel from California to Maine or from Washington State to Florida without encountering the least control. In Canada you can travel from Nova Scotia to Yukon without encountering the least control (until the outbreak of the epidemic, that is). So, yes, the virus can spread much more easily all over the North American and European continent than in Asia. Are you even trying to use your brain?
        Besides, since when are Singapore, Macau and Hong Kong democracies?

        “And yes, Europe/US have imposed travel bans from China too, imposed even MORE stricter lockdowns, and are also democratic free societies too.”
        When did the Covid-19 epidemic get out of hand in Europe? Around 26 February 2020. And when did the EU close its borders? In Mid-March 2020. More than two weeks later. That was a little too late, don’t you think so?

        https://euobserver.com/coronavirus/147742

        Now, the epicenter of the outbreak in Europe was in Northern Italy. And do you know what the initial Covid-19 cases in Italy had in common? Wuhan and the PRC. “Solo giovedì 19 (febbraio), quando sono esplosi i problemi respiratori, la moglie si è ricordata degli incontri con un amico italiano rientrato dalla Cina il 21 gennaio.” Google-translate this.
        https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2020/02/26/news/codogno_i_medici_dell_ospedale_in_trincea_quelle_accuse_del_premier_fanno_piu_male_della_malattia_-249593374/?refresh_ce

        Do you want to hear a funny coincidence? Italy banned flights from the PRC on 31 January 2020… that is, ten days after that friend got back from the PRC. And yes, it is those delayed travel-restrictions imposed on the PRC that enabled Covid-19 to penetrate Europe.
        https://www.forbes.com/sites/davekeating/2020/03/12/italy-banned-flights-from-china-before-americait-didnt-work/#3012cb61481b

        “One big difference is their propensity to not use face-masks to control asymptomatic carriers who are contagious and unknowingly spread the virus.”
        Can I ask you a question? How do you explain that the epidemic started in Orthodox Eastern Europe much later than in Catholic/Protestant Western Europe? Neither Eastern Europeans nor Western Europeans wear face masks, though.
        Little hint. Catholic/Protestant Western Europeans celebrate Carnival and went on holiday around 20-26 February 2020. Orthodox Eastern Europeans don’t celebrate Carnival and didn’t enjoy holidays in February. Oh, other reminder, the epidemic got out of hand in Western Europe… after 26 February 2020.
        Americans enjoyed Mid-Winter holidays around 20-26 February 2020. Two weeks later, 32 of the 50 American states were infected. That’s a lot of coincidences revolving around the holidays… You know, holidays, when people travel…

        Oh and also, how come the incidence rate in Eastern Europe was half as low as in Western Europe? And how do you explain that the incidence rate in New York was so much higher than in the rest of the United States? And how do you explain that the incidence rate is more than twice as high in Quebec than in the rest of Canada?

        If you want to explain the lower rates in Asia by means of the face mask, you’re going to have to find an explanation for the discrepancies recorded in the non-mask-wearing West as well. Can you do that?

        “It takes some massive go to dismiss the world’s biggest experiment with some mental gymnastics on “face masks” don’t work. The results speak for themselves.”
        Please enlighten me. What experiment are you talking about? Nooo, don’t tell me you are comparing this “Asians wear face masks/Westerners don’t wear face masks” thing with an actual experiment!? You are aware that there are way too many variable for this “experiment” to lead to the simplistic conclusion you drew, aren’t you?

        Now, considering the superficiality of your arguments, your lack of research, and your need for simplistic answers, I understand that reading, analyzing, looking for official figures, crunching numbers, and connecting dots may sound like mental gymnastics to you. But rest assured that to any sane being with an IQ in the triple digits, it is just an everyday activity.

        Like

      6. The irony is that the virus is spreading quicker in lower population dense NA and Europe compared to the world’s most densely population region (Asia). You attribute this to fluid borders, but population density is a important factor to viral transmissible. Theoretically, it should spread like wildfire in Asia due to much higher population density. Asian nations also had rigorous quarantine and inspection on travelers from China too, so Asian nations not 100% sealed.

        Eastern Europe’s testing rate per capita is abysmal, so the profound lack of testing on a population-level can easily skew the infection rate per capita. You can’t use flawed data to prove your point, there is less cases in Eastern Europe by virtue of lack of testing. Are you intentionally misrepresenting information when it convenient to you?

        The results speak for themselves, look at nations with face-masks AND lockdowns, compared with no face-masks AND lockdowns, you can see nations with additional face-masks have significantly lower-infections rates per capita and mortality rates per capita. Facts don’t care about your feelings.

        Like

      7. “The irony is that the virus is spreading quicker in lower population dense NA and Europe compared to the world’s most densely population region (Asia).”
        The irony is that people in Europe and North America can carry the virus from one country (or state/province) to the other unhindered by border controls. In Asia, you can’t get past a border control carrying Covid-19. And if the virus doesn’t get through the border, it can’t infect the population, however densely populated it is. Basic logic. I mean… 95% and 96% drop in visitors in Macau and Hong Kong in February and April for instance. Basic laws of probabilities.
        Case in point: four new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in Hong Kong on Thursday 7 May 2020… at the airport of Shek Lap Kok. Yes, you read right, they did not get past the border control. Is that so hard to understand?
        https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/3083295/coronavirus-least-four-new-infections-hong-kong

        “Eastern Europe’s testing rate per capita is abysmal, so the profound lack of testing on a population-level can easily skew the infection rate per capita. You can’t use flawed data to prove your point, there is less cases in Eastern Europe by virtue of lack of testing. Are you intentionally misrepresenting information when it convenient to you?”
        My argument is based on figures gathered from the ECDC. You know, the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control. How about you? What do you base your claim on? Any evidence to back up your claim?
        Besides, if you are using the argument of the abysmal testing-rate per capita to prove your point, do you know which other country had an abysmal testing-rate per capita? Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan for instance! Those very Asian cities/countries you take as an example.
        https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/3075274/coronavirus-hong-kong-government-told-double
        https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-52466834
        https://focustaiwan.tw/society/202004280019
        Please download the data below and you’ll notice that… testing-rates in Asian countries are abysmally low as well.
        https://ourworldindata.org/coronavirus-testing
        Oh, and by the way, do you know which country in Asia recorded the highest testing-rate per capita? Singapore… The very Asian country that recorded the highest incidence rate… since late-January 2020; well before the surge in cases in the migrant workers dormitories.
        https://www.moh.gov.sg/news-highlights/details/scaling-up-of-covid-19-testing
        Interesting how you uses specific arguments when it fits your narrative… regardless of them contradicting your very narrative in Asia. And do some fucking research before commenting, dammit!

        Now, of course those figures are flawed. And they will remain flawed until every country tests each and every of its citizens, whether they show symptoms or not. Until then, all I can do, is either use official data or make unsubstantiated claims, as you do (and brush embarrassing figures under the rug).

        “The results speak for themselves, look at nations with face-masks AND lockdowns, compared with no face-masks AND lockdowns, you can see nations with additional face-masks have significantly lower-infections rates per capita and mortality rates per capita. Facts don’t care about your feelings.”
        Aren’t you tired of spewing the same superficial argument over and over? Did you notice that Asian countries imposed travel restrictions BEFORE the epidemic hit said countries? Did you notice that Western countries imposed travel restrictions AFTER the epidemic hit the West? Did you notice that it is impossible to enter an Asian country without getting through a border control? Did you notice that travel restrictions between some European countries (inside the Schengen area) were imposed only in April 2020? Did you notice you can still travel freely from one American state to the other unhindered by the least border control?

        Is it possible for you to get past your binary way of thinking and analyze the situation a bit deeper than the superficial “Asian wear face masks/Westerners don’t wear face masks”? Or, at the very least, provide me with hard data, with some actual figures that prove it is indeed the face mask that was responsible for the low incidence rates in Asia rather than other measures taken by Asian governments. I mean… I provide you with sources, references, official data, and figures. You never do.

        “Facts don’t care about your feelings.”
        True. But your cognitive dissonance doesn’t seem to care too much about analyzing facts in detail either.

        Like

      8. “Why did they torpedo the economy instead of recommending masks”

        This is a classical straw mans argument by distorting the argument as if masks use is mutually exclusive to social-distancing measures.

        Nations that do both social-distancing measurse AND face-mask use have significantly better outcomes than nations that only do social-distancing measures, as evidenced by the significant majority of cases in US/Europe compared to Asia.

        It’s not a strawman false dillemma argument as you implied. Again, by using a strawman, your credibility is heavily tarnished.

        Like

      9. It seems you have no idea what a straw man argument is. What argument exactly did I distort? Did the global economy take a dive following the measures taken by ALL the governments in the world? The answer is yes. You can’t deny it, it’s all over the news. So, tell me, why did they take those measures (travel restrictions, confinements, quarantines) since the face mask is supposed to work, as you keep repeating?

        “as if masks use is mutually exclusive to social-distancing measures.”
        Did I ever say that? You pretend I am talking about social-distancing, which I never did. Seriously, I double-checked. Not even once do I mention social-distancing. To make matters worse, you even misquote the quote you pretend I wrote. “Why did they torpedo the economy instead of recommending masks” I never wrote that! The exact quote was: “why did Asian countries torpedo their economies with travel restrictions, and other such economy-crippling measures?” Now, misquoting people and replying on the misquote, that is a prime example of a strawman argument.
        Anyway, Then you go on to explain that face masks and social-distancing are not mutually exclusive. And you’re right, obviously… But, I never mentioned social-distancing so… you’re literally replying to an argument you made-up. Strawman argument at its best! Just priceless.

        Again, I never mentioned social-distancing. Who gives a fuck about your social-distancing? You are disingenuous. I am talking about economy-crippling measures. You know, like TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS which cause airline companies, international commerce, and the tourism industry to lose billions of dollars every day; CONFINEMENT which prevented businesses to run smoothly and resulted in millions of people losing their jobs (+30 million in the US alone); and QUARANTINES which forced entire cities to nearly shut down.

        Now, your distorting my argument claiming that I am talking about social-distancing when, really, that is the one thing I never mentioned, and base your entire argument on that one argument I never make, THAT is a straw man argument.

        “It’s not a strawman false dillemma argument as you implied.”
        Obviously it is not… since I never made that argument. Seriously, rwat1, you should learn the definition of the words you try to use in your arguments. It is just disgusting how you pretend I use a strawman argument… by using the epitome of all strawman arguments yourself.

        Like

      10. The irony is that the original post is littered with references to Singapore’s NCID (National Centre for Infectious Diseases) which explicitly recommended AGAINST face-masks for healthy individuals.

        When Singapore’s NCID flip-flopped on it’s guidance on face-masks for general public on April 14, not only did you dismiss it at your own convenience, but you misrepresented Singapore as a face-mask nation, when they only had a compulsory order since April 14, WEEKS after local cases exploded in migrant workers dormitory.

        Your credibility has really been tarnished, after your own sources has been used against you. Singapore’s cases exploded WEEKS before the compulsory order on face masks on April 14, and it’s evident that the combination of lockdowns and face-masks in Singapore has dramatically reduced the rate of new infections and cases recently.

        Like

      11. “The irony is that the original post is littered with references to Singapore’s NCID (National Centre for Infectious Diseases) which explicitly recommended AGAINST face-masks for healthy individuals.”
        I don’t understand. Where is the irony? I was merely replying to your claim that Singaporeans DO NOT wear face masks.” And I simply proved to you that, yes they do wear face masks. Something you would have found out for yourself had you done a five-minute Google-search.
        Now, Singapore changed its stance toward the face mask. So what? It doesn’t change the fact that your initial statement was a LIE.

        “When Singapore’s NCID flip-flopped on it’s guidance on face-masks for general public on April 14, not only did you dismiss it at your own convenience, but you misrepresented Singapore as a face-mask nation, when they only had a compulsory order since April 14, WEEKS after local cases exploded in migrant workers dormitory.”
        Uhm… care to show me where exactly I dismissed the NCID’s flip-flopping? You seem to like to pretend I use strawman arguments. But this here is yet another prime example of your abundant use of strawman arguments. Moreover, I never said Singapore was a face-mask wearing nation… Seriously, dude, you should slow down with the strawman arguments. How can I even reply on an argument I never made?

        “Your credibility has really been tarnished, after your own sources has been used against you. Singapore’s cases exploded WEEKS before the compulsory order on face masks on April 14, and it’s evident that the combination of lockdowns and face-masks in Singapore has dramatically reduced the rate of new infections and cases recently.”
        Really? Really? Fucking really? Check out the number of daily cases recorded in Singapore since 14 April. Now, sure the number of daily cases has dropped since 20 April 2020. But I would have expected a more important drop since the mask… prevents the spread. Yet, Singapore still recorded 768 new cases on 8 May 2020 (one day prior to this reply). Why are there still new cases now the mask is compulsory? Didn’t you notice that Singapore has taken a shitload of other measures to combat the surge in new cases? Oh no… of course you didn’t, since it didn’t include the face mask. Why did they have to resort to other measures? Why didn’t they merely rely on the all powerful face mask?

        And don’t talk about my credibility. My own source has been used against me? When? NCID changed its stance regarding the face mask. That’s it. Now, your brushing under the rug inconvenient facts, or disregarding your very own argument (remember that “Singaporeans don’t wear face masks” crap?) to pretend I was answering to another question… that puts a dent in your credibility.

        Like

  2. Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials is the Gold Standard of evidence in Scientific World.

    A systematic review and meta-analysis found insufficient data to determine definitively whether N95 respirators are superior to surgical masks in protecting health care workers against transmissible acute respiratory infections in clinical settings.

    Smith, Jeffrey D., et al. “Effectiveness of N95 respirators versus surgical masks in protecting health care workers from acute respiratory infection: a systematic review and meta-analysis.” Cmaj 188.8 (2016): 567-574. https://www.cmaj.ca/content/188/8/567.short

    Like

  3. The actual CDC recommendation is neutral on surgical masks for asymptomatic patients. There is no explicit negative recommendation on it. They even suggest that if patients do use surgical face-masks they continue to use it at all times in public settings.

    https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/infectioncontrol/maskguidance.htm

    The only reason why CDC does not explicitly make a recommendation (Even if they is improved efficacy than do-nothing) is because US doctors and US culture think face-masks are uncool. It’s a cultural issue and individualism in US, to the detriment of the common collective.

    Like

    1. “The only reason why CDC does not explicitly make a recommendation (Even if they is improved efficacy than do-nothing) is because US doctors and US culture think face-masks are uncool.”

      False. The CDC does not explicitly recommend face masks because they are ineffective at preventing diseases for the reasons that this essay points out..

      ” It’s a cultural issue and individualism in US, to the detriment of the common collective.”

      Since only individuals exist, not collectives qua collectives, appeals to “the common collective” are fallacious as well as malicious due to its implicit demand that individual human beings be sacrificed to it. Such appeals are the common utterances of dictators and their ignorant or defectively educated, or sociopathic or psychopathic civilian supporters.

      Think for yourself. Protect yourself with facts, not by mindlessly complying with statist diktats decreed by local, state, or federal government operators.

      Simply wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water for 20 seconds, and keep your hands away from your mouth, nose, and eyes. If you are unable to wash your hands, use hand sanitizer with 60% alcohol content.

      Disregard all diktats, and assert and defend–physically, if necessary–your legitimate individual rights to self-ownership and personal liberty by not wearing a mask

      Like

      1. The debate over face-masks is over, because CDC, WHO, FDA, and CMS now all recommend face-masks or cloth masks for the general public.

        It’s funny to see how this rant aged so well when even CDC flip-flopped on it’s mask guidance.

        Like

      2. You are downright lying. WHO did not change its recommendations.

        “Studies of influenza, influenza-like illness, and human coronaviruses provide evidence that the use of a medical mask can prevent the spread of infectious droplets from an infected person to someone else and potential contamination of the environment by these droplets. There is limited evidence that wearing a medical mask by healthy individuals in the households or among contacts of a sick patient, or among attendees of mass gatherings may be beneficial as a preventive measure. However, there is currently no evidence that wearing a mask (whether medical or other types) by healthy persons in the wider community setting, including universal community masking, can prevent them from infection with respiratory viruses, including COVID-19.
        The use of medical masks in the community may create a false sense of security, with neglect of other essential measures, such as hand hygiene practices and physical distancing, (…)”

        Downloaded straight from WHO’s webpage “Advice on the use of masks in the context of COVID-19”
        https://www.who.int/publications-detail/advice-on-the-use-of-masks-in-the-community-during-home-care-and-in-healthcare-settings-in-the-context-of-the-novel-coronavirus-(2019-ncov)-outbreak (last retrieved on 20 April 2020)

        You can also visit the page “Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: When and how to use masks”
        https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/when-and-how-to-use-masks (last retrieved on 20 April 2020)

        As for CDC, they recommend wearing cloth masks. I mean… cloth masks! Seriously? The very masks no one can control the quality of since many are home made. The very masks which efficiency no one has ever tested. The very masks which efficiency no one has ever proven. And CDC recommends “that”? Speaking of a false sense of security…

        Like

      3. The irony is that this original post is littered with references to CDC as if it’s the holy grail of information. When CDC flip-flops on it’s guidance on face masks for general public use, you dismiss it at your own convenience.

        Your credibility has really been tarnished, after your own sources has been used against you. “Cloth masks, Seriously?!” (Faux outrage and deflection) is almost like Trumpian type of response to health experts. I’d trust CDC far more than I trust some random person on the internet.

        Like

      4. It is ironic indeed that a renowned and well-respected source of information such as CDC would recommend something which efficiency has been shown time and again to be very limited.

        Now, the fact that I have the utmost respect for CDC as a source of information doesn’t mean that I have to blindly follow any recommendation made by CDC. See, the very reason I trust CDC as a source of information on medical matters is because the information found on CDC’s website is based on serious scientific research; and their articles/pages are jam-packed with sources and references.

        However, CDC’s recommendation on the cloth mask is based on no evidence whatsoever that it may protect its user against Covid-19. It does prevent droplet transmission -to an extent- but it has never been proven to be a reliable and consistent protection against infections. And there lies the outrage. The fact that a well-respected agency such as CDC doesn’t deem it necessary to provide any reliable, undeniable evidence that the cloth mask offers a consistently high level of protection, yet recommends its use, is quite frightening.

        As a matter of fact, as CDC’s flip-flopping intrigued me, I did some further research on the topic of the cloth mask. The information I found shows that CDC’s recommendations regarding the cloth mask are bad. Perhaps you should do some research as well before trying to discredit me. Believe you me, I never write/post anything unless I am sure I’ve got plenty of reliable sources to back up my claims. Why don’t you start with those four articles.
        https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2020/04/commentary-masks-all-covid-19-not-based-sound-data
        https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/4/e006577
        https://www.jhsph.edu/covid-19/articles/the-right-mask-for-the-task.html
        https://www.researchgate.net/publication/258525804_Testing_the_Efficacy_of_Homemade_Masks_Would_They_Protect_in_an_Influenza_Pandemic

        I do not think my credibility has been tarnished the least bit. My sources haven’t been used against me… since I never used CDC’s cloth mask recommendations as sources. In fact, I believe that my not blindly following CDC is proof of my independence of mind, and critical thinking. CDC is not a rock band. And I am not a groupie. Because I trust CDC’s well-sourced and well-referenced information does not mean I have to accept unsubstantiated claims as well.

        By the way, may I ask you a question? I’ve been struggling with this question for days now and everyone I have asked that question to has dodged it.
        If the face mask (surgical mask or cloth mask) indeed offers efficient protection against Covid-19, why did all the governments in the world take economy-crippling measures instead of ordering factories on their territory to produce face masks?

        Like

  4. The cloth face masks currently being touted by governors and mayors in the USA are little more than virtue signaling security blankets designed to keep their base from panicking.

    Penetration of cloth masks by particles was almost 97% and medical masks 44%.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4420971/

    Neither surgical nor cotton masks are effective at stopping the new coronavirus from spreading when a person coughs. Neither effectively filtered SARS–CoV-2 during coughs by infected patients.
    https://annals.org/aim/fullarticle/2764367/effectiveness-surgical-cotton-masks-blocking-sars-cov-2-controlled-comparison

    The “better than nuthin’” argument holds no water.

    Like

    1. Researchers say 25 percent to 50 percent of people with COVID-19 are unaware they have the virus (but are still highly contagious) This allows the novel coronavirus to spread more rapidly throughout a community. Experts say these carriers without symptoms make it even more important for people to wear face masks in public. Masks are not so much to protect yourself from others, but to stop your spreading of disease (even if you are asymptomatic/undiagnosed).

      This is the reason why China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, etc… have relatively lower infections per capita and mortality per capita compared to cloth mask nations (United States) or no masks nations (many European and South American nations).

      Like

      1. Come on! Enough with this simplistic “Asian wear face masks they are not infected; Westerners don’t wear face masks they are infected.” Is it possible to analyse the context of the epidemic in each country a bit more in depth? Tell me, why did Singapore record such a high incidence rate? They have been wearing face masks throughout the epidemic just like Hong Kongers or Koreans.

        Did you ever think about the context in which the virus spread in the countries you mentioned? The PRC imposed a quarantine on the epicenter of the epidemic! A fucking quarantine! All Asian countries closed their borders with the PRC and… surprisingly, since only a handful of potential carriers from the PRC entered said countries, the probability for the epidemic to spread was de facto reduced. Please do your research.Seriously. The number of visitors in Hong Kong and Macao has dropped by 96% in February and March 2020. 96%!!! Japan and Taiwan are islands. South Korea can be compared with an island as its sole land border is with North Korea.

        In Europe and North America, on the other hand, there is a little something called “freedom” that made it much harder to prevent the virus from penetrating said countries. Moreover, the epidemic started in Asia a month before it hit the West. Asian countries only had to prevent the virus to be imported from the PRC. By the time the virus hit the West, it had already infected every Asian country. In other words, the West had to keep an eye on all Asian countries instead of just the PRC.

        Seriously, if the lower incidence rates in Asia could be explained as simply as by the face-mask-wearing bullshit we’ve been spoon-fed by the media, why did Asian countries torpedoed their economies with travel restrictions, and other such economy-crippling measures?

        Please read my analysis on the context in which the spread of the virus occurred instead of spewing the superficial crap. Hopefully you’ll finally realise just how thin the link between the face mask and the incidence rates in the different countries in the world really is after you read this.

        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/07/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-1-the-prc/
        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/08/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-2-hong-kong-macau-and-singapore/
        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/09/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-3-japan-and-taiwan/
        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/10/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-4-south-korea/
        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/14/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-5-europe/
        https://gweilorant.home.blog/2020/04/22/covid-19-is-the-face-mask-the-miracle-answer-to-the-pandemic-part-6-the-usa-and-canada/

        Like

  5. Research showing asymptomatic do not shed virus load even without mask done by HKU but ignored by local media, or those “experts” advising Government. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2 “Among the samples collected without a face mask, we found that the majority of participants with influenza virus and coronavirus infection did not shed detectable virus in respiratory droplets or aerosols”

    Like

    1. “The viral load detected in nasopharyngeal swabs of asymptomatic carriers is relatively high, with a great potential for transmission.”
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7291769/

      “Asymptomatic infection at time of laboratory confirmation has been reported from many settings. Some of these cases developed some symptoms at a later stage of infection. In a recent review, the proportion of positive cases that remained asymptomatic was estimated at 16%, with a range from 6 to 41%. In another systematic review, the pooled proportion of asymptomatic cases at time of testing was 25%. A majority of these cases developed symptoms later on, with only 8.4% of the cases remaining asymptomatic throughout the follow-up period. There are also reports of asymptomatic cases with laboratory-confirmed viral shedding in respiratory and gastrointestinal samples. Similar viral loads in asymptomatic versus symptomatic cases have been reported, indicating the potential of virus transmission from asymptomatic patients.”
      https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/covid-19/latest-evidence/transmission

      Like

    2. That’s because the result is a major limitation of the study as admitted by the authors if you cared to continue reading: “The major limitation of our study was the large proportion of participants with undetectable viral shedding in exhaled breath for each of the viruses studied.” Also, Table1B found statistically significant difference in the presence of detectable viral aerosols (p-value=0.04) between masked and unmask subjects, and very close to significant difference in detecting presence of viral droplets (p-value = 0.09) between masked and unmasked subjects. A major limitation you can see it the low sample size in the coronavirus mask group (n=10) and coronavirus non-mask group (n=11) but the fact they can detect a statistically significant difference for viral aerosols even with such low sample size is very impressive, and speaks volumes about the efficacy of masks in blocking aerosols (which we already know to be true).

      Like

      1. Interesting how you only seem interested in the “limitations of studies” when it favors your claim but ignore it when it doesn’t.

        Now, the point of the article was not to find out whether face masks block AEROSOLS or not, which we already know to be true, as you state (bear in mind that “aerosol” does not equate to “droplet”, let alone “virion”). Oh, and look at this… in the very part you copy/pasted, the author stated “statistically significant difference in the presence of detectable viral AEROSOLS” but only a “very close to significant difference in detecting presence of viral DROPLETS”… Do you understand the difference?

        You seem obsessed with the idea that face masks may block aerosols from being EXHALED… But does it mean a masked person will be better protected from INHALING viral DROPLETS than an unmasked person? At the end of the day, that’s the only thing that really matters. You seem the believe they will. As such, do you care to explain the Third Wave observed in Hong Kong, the sudden surge observed in Europe, and the surge observed in the United States in July 2020, please.

        FYI, the number of Hong Kongers wearing face masks hasn’t changed since the Second Wave, and the number of people wearing a face mask in Europe and in the United States is much higher than it was in March 2020.

        Like

      2. “Interesting how you only seem interested in the “limitations of studies” when it favors your claim but ignore it when it doesn’t.”

        I’m interested in what the Authors consider as “limitation” of the study. If you disagree with the Author’s own assessment of study’s limitations, then why do you bother quoting the author’s to begin with? This type of cognitive dissonance and cherry picking of results exposes you for who you are.

        ” (bear in mind that “aerosol” does not equate to “droplet”, let alone “virion” )”

        You are having a hard time. Nowhere in my post did I equate aerosol to droplet or virion. What are you smoking?

        “Oh, and look at this… in the very part you copy/pasted, the author stated “statistically significant difference in the presence of detectable viral AEROSOLS” but only a “very close to significant difference in detecting presence of viral DROPLETS”… Do you understand the difference?

        Now I can see you are definitely high on some substance. My post demonstrates I understand Table 2B of the article very well, since they define AEROSOLS and DROPLETS separately. Do you understand what is going on in Table 2B? Nowhere did I equate aerosols = droplets = virions, that’s just putting words into other people’s mouth.

        “You seem obsessed with the idea that face masks may block aerosols from being EXHALED… ”

        I am reporting the results from the Author’s paper. It’s evident you haven’t read Table 2B or the paper in full detail.

        ” But does it mean a masked person will be better protected from INHALING viral DROPLETS than an unmasked person? ”

        If everyone asymptomatic patient wore a mask, then we know viral transmissions will significantly reduce.

        “At the end of the day, that’s the only thing that really matters. ”

        Nope, because Asymptomatic patients constitute the vast majority of viral transmission spread unknowingly. Do you honestly think sick people are walking around coughing? I never seen that before, it’s mostly asymptomatic spread of the virus. That’s why controlling EXHALE by asymptomatic patients is much more important than protecting health people from INHALING the virus. Masks are about preventing asymptomatic transmission, not protecting you from others.

        “As such, do you care to explain the Third Wave observed in Hong Kong, the sudden surge observed in Europe, and the surge observed in the United States in July 2020, please.”

        58 cases is miniscule rounding error compared to 75,000 (record breaking cases) in USA. HK has successfully controlled the epidemic despite vastly higher population density in HK compared to the less population dense Europe/America. It makes no sense that HK (most densely populated city on earth) can contain the epidemic while more sparsely populated US/Europe has significantly higher cases per capita. It can only be attributed to strict compliance to social distance guidelines and widespread face-mask use. There is no other explanation.

        “FYI, the number of Hong Kongers wearing face masks hasn’t changed since the Second Wave, and the number of people wearing a face mask in Europe and in the United States is much higher than it was in March 2020.”

        Scientific studies have modeled that you need atleast 80-90% of the population with strict adherence to face-masks in order to rapidly reduce transmission risk. The United States and Europe have nowhere near 80% compliance in many Republican Red States (Texas, Florida, Arizona, etc…), they are far from 80%. Republican voters only wear mask at 50-60% rate, compared to Democratic voters who wear masks at 80-90% rate. That explains why Red Republican States have an explosion of recent cases, while New York City and Massachusetts (two epicenters which had widespread face-mask usage) have basically eliminated all their cases.

        Like

      3. I’m interested in what the Authors consider as “limitation” of the study.
        Yes… That is what I am saying. You are interested in the author’s limitations when those limitations (seem) to prove your point.

        This type of cognitive dissonance and cherry picking of results exposes you for who you are.
        Absolutely. It exposes me for what I am. Someone who never understands your confused train of thought. And I’m not kidding. Seriously, I spent more time trying to understand whether you were agreeing with me, or with the original poster.

        You are having a hard time. Nowhere in my post did I equate aerosol to droplet or virion. What are you smoking?
        I was literally quoting your own post, you fucking idiot. The author indicated “significant differences” when measuring aerosols, but “very close to significant” when measuring droplets. I was trying to make sure you realised the difference between both. Again, you are proving you don’t understand what you are posting.

        If everyone asymptomatic patient wore a mask, then we know viral transmissions will significantly reduce.
        (Scientific) Experiment? (Scientific) Evidence? (Scientific) Proof? (Scientific) Source?

        Nope
        Ah… so it is not important to know whether you will be infected or not?

        Because Asymptomatic patients constitute the vast majority of viral transmission spread unknowingly.
        Hold on… the original poster was saying that asymptomatic carriers did NOT transmit the disease. Now you are saying they do. So… you actually agree with me? Man, seriously, it is high time you had sorted out the mess in your head and started structuring your thoughts.

        I never seen that before, it’s mostly asymptomatic spread of the virus.
        I don’t care what YOU have seen or not. I want to know what happens in reality. See, I don’t think I have ever met a person who had Covid-19. Does it mean Covid-19 doesn’t exist based on what I have seen? So, again, (scientific) source, please?

        58 cases is miniscule rounding error compared to 75,000 (record breaking cases) in USA
        Where did you see me compare HK with the USA? I was comparing the Third Wave in HK with the previous waves in HK.

        Republican voters only wear mask at 50-60% rate, compared to Democratic voters who wear masks at 80-90% rate.
        That seems like a very precise ratios. And politically very oriented. Your source, please?

        while New York City and Massachusetts (two epicenters which had widespread face-mask usage) have basically eliminated all their cases
        Hahaha widespread face mask usage in New York? True, New Yorkers have been wearing masks more than Southerners, but… widespread? Now, it is my turn to ask what you are smoking. But again, your source, please?

        Scientific studies have modeled that you need atleast 80-90% of the population with strict adherence to face-masks in order to rapidly reduce transmission risk.
        In Hong Kong, we must be at about 99% adherence to face mask wearing (though, I can’t prove this otherwise than through visual observation). And yet… the Third Wave in Hong Kong is the most violent one yet (relative to the previous waves recorded… IN HONG KONG (just to make sure your cockroach brain understands, I am comparing the Third Wave in HK with the previous waves in HK. Not the US. Not Europe. But HK)).

        “58 cases is miniscule rounding error compared to 75,000 (record breaking cases) in USA. HK has successfully controlled the epidemic despite vastly higher population density in HK compared to the less population dense Europe/America. It makes no sense that HK (most densely populated city on earth) can contain the epidemic while more sparsely populated US/Europe has significantly higher cases per capita. It can only be attributed to strict compliance to social distance guidelines and widespread face-mask use. There is no other explanation.”
        You, fucking retard. We are in the early stages of a Third Wave in Hong Kong that has already beaten all its previous daily records. I am not comparing Hong Kong with the US or Europe. I am comparing HK with the previous waves in HK. And you completely missed the point (as you always do). Why is there even a third wave in HK to begin with if your tissue is so effective? Little hint: HK relaxed its social distancing measures in June (not its face mask measures, though). And the reason HK recorded lower incidence rates than Europe and North America prior to the Third Wave? Closed borders, travel restrictions, social distancing, etc. All of which I already explained multiple times in my previous articles. Looks like someone doesn’t want to understand.

        Seriously tired of replying to you, man. Gonna have to stop replying. You’re wasting my time.

        Like

      4. “Yes… That is what I am saying. You are interested in the author’s limitations when those limitations (seem) to prove your point.”

        And you are interested in un-generalizable and wrong results that Authors has dismissed as invalid when these results (seem) to prove your point.

        “Absolutely. It exposes me for what I am. Someone who never understands your confused train of thought. And I’m not kidding. Seriously, I spent more time trying to understand whether you were agreeing with me, or with the original poster.”

        It appears you are having a hard time understand the limitations of the study and the generalizability of the results. When the authors said they found no statistical significant difference in viral loads between masked and unmasked subjects, then go on to say a major limitation of the study is: “the major limitation of our study was the large proportion of participants with undetectable viral shedding in exhaled breath for each of the viruses studied.” due to the methodology of data collection, it means that the results is not generalizable. The authors are admitting to take the results with a grain of salt. It doesn’t take a PhD to understand what the author is getting at.

        “I was literally quoting your own post, you fucking idiot. The author indicated “significant differences” when measuring aerosols, but “very close to significant” when measuring droplets. I was trying to make sure you realised the difference between both. Again, you are proving you don’t understand what you are posting.”

        You are having a hard time. Nowhere in my post did I confuse Aerosols and Droplets. Please show me where they was any confusion about Aerosols or Droplets in my post. You are create a false argument out of nothing, there was no confusion in anywhere about Aerosols and Droplets until you brought it up. Also, cool it with the ad hominem attacks.

        “(Scientific) Experiment? (Scientific) Evidence? (Scientific) Proof? (Scientific) Source?”

        Most transmission of the coronavirus is coming from people who are asymptomatic and never develop any signs of the virus, a top official from the Department of Health and Human Services said Friday. https://www.cnbc.com/2020/07/17/top-hhs-official-says-most-of-the-coronavirus-transmission-is-from-asymptomatic-people.html

        “We know that most of the spread are from asymptomatic people, particularly young adults, so you have to cast a wide net and I think we’re able to do that,” said Admiral Brett Giroir, the assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
        Dr. Anthony Fauci estimated that 25 to 50 percent of cases may be asymptomatic. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/06/world/coronavirus-live-news-updates.html

        So have the nation’s foremost experts saying most transmissions comes from asymptomatic spreaders.

        “Ah… so it is not important to know whether you will be infected or not?”

        You are having a hard time. Nowhere do I imply that knowing infection status is not important. That’s you putting words into people’s mouths.

        “Hold on… the original poster was saying that asymptomatic carriers did NOT transmit the disease.”

        Yes, I was replying to Filmnoir.

        ” Now you are saying they do. So… you actually agree with me?”

        Are you Filmnoir, the original poster I was replying to?

        “So… you actually agree with me? Man, seriously, it is high time you had sorted out the mess in your head and started structuring your thoughts.”

        So the reason you are confused is because you butt half-way into a conversation between me and Filmnoir. No wonder you are confused, nobody was replying to you until you interject into a conversation without knowing the premise of the conversation.

        “I don’t care what YOU have seen or not. I want to know what happens in reality. See, I don’t think I have ever met a person who had Covid-19. Does it mean Covid-19 doesn’t exist based on what I have seen? So, again, (scientific) source, please?

        Just so you are aware, over 40 million Americans have lost their jobs in the past year due to the pandemic. That’s close to 25%, as bad as the Great Depression level of unemployment. Everyone knows atleast one person that has been deeply affected by the virus, physically or economically. If you believe the majority of viral transmission is people walking around coughing into other’s faces, then you are terribly naive. The virus is silent spreader and most people don’t even know they are unknowingly spreading the virus. This is according to US assistant secretary of health, Admiral Brett Giroir, https://thehill.com/changing-america/well-being/medical-advances/507807-asymptomatic-spread-responsible-for-most-virus

        “Where did you see me compare HK with the USA? I was comparing the Third Wave in HK with the previous waves in HK.”

        The “Third Wave” is very explainable since not every in HK wears a face mask. According to public polling, 90% of HKers wear face-masks regularly in past 2 weeks. https://today.yougov.com/topics/health/articles-reports/2020/04/22/close-two-three-americans-expect-face-masks-be-nor

        Therefore, 10% of HKers * 7.5 million = 750,000 non-mask wearing vulnerable population.

        58 cases is a negligible rounding error among 750,000 non-mask wearing people. You expect it to be significant higher in a “real” third wave but this is not entirely unexpected since not 100% of population wears masks, and you have different levels of compliance, adherence, and quality of masks, not all masks wearers or masks are equal.

        “That seems like a very precise ratios. And politically very oriented. Your source, please?”

        By two to one, Democrats (63%) are more likely than Republicans (31%) to say they always wear a face mask in public.

        https://today.yougov.com/topics/health/articles-reports/2020/06/26/americans-wearing-face-masks-should-be-mandatory

        “Hahaha widespread face mask usage in New York? True, New Yorkers have been wearing masks more than Southerners, but… widespread? Now, it is my turn to ask what you are smoking. But again, your source, please?”

        Up to 70% of New Yorkers wear face-masks. In New York, 67% say they’re wearing a mask at all times when they leave their house. At least 60% of residents in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland indicated that they were always wearing masks.

        Source: https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/26/politics/maskwearing-coronavirus-analysis/index.html

        Compare that to significantly lower rates in Southern States( which are experience an Explosion in new cases), while Northeastern states have all but eliminated their coronavirus cases. A large part can be attributable to face mask usage.

        “In Hong Kong, we must be at about 99% adherence to face mask wearing (though, I can’t prove this otherwise than through visual observation). ”

        Let’s say HK has 99% adherence, 1% non-adherence to face-masks. (Other polls show 90% adherence)

        1% * 7.5 million = 75,000 cases.

        58 cases is STILL a negligible rounding error compared to 75,000 (which is what US experiences on a daily basis).

        58 cases is negligible, US has 1300X times more per day.

        “And yet… the Third Wave in Hong Kong is the most violent one yet (relative to the previous waves recorded… IN HONG KONG (just to make sure your cockroach brain understands, I am comparing the Third Wave in HK with the previous waves in HK. Not the US. Not Europe. But HK)).”

        I’ve mathematically proven that you expect 75,000 to 750,000 cases given a 1% to 10% non-adherence to face masks. So increases in cases does not prove that face-masks don’t work, they just prove that there is a non-zero % of population that don’t wear face masks. You can’t draw any conclusion from this except that non-face mask wearing people are getting infected at a non-zero rate given a non-zero percentage of non-adherence.

        “We are in the early stages of a Third Wave in Hong Kong that has already beaten all its previous daily records. ”

        Given a 1-10% non-compliance to face masks in HK, this is still significantly lower than expected number of infections you expect. All this proves is that 1-10% of HK population who don’t wear face masks are getting infected. When you have larger proportion of infection rates (like 20% of HK population infected when 99% wears masks), then you can begin to draw conclusions. You can’t draw conclusions with 58 cases is well within the 1-10% of non-face masks wears in Hong Kong.

        “And the reason HK recorded lower incidence rates than Europe and North America prior to the Third Wave? Closed borders, travel restrictions, social distancing, etc. All of which I already explained multiple times in my previous articles. Looks like someone doesn’t want to understand.”

        None of your posts describes the huge disproportionate surge of cases within United States among Democrat US states (majority face-mask wearing) and Republican US states (majority non-face mask wearing). There is no “closed borders” between Democrat and Republican US states, so none of your other posts applies in this situation. I wonder what is your explanation for explosive surge in Republican US states (Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia) which majority do not have face-masks? There is no “Closed borders” between US states, so your argument doesn’t even apply here.

        “Seriously tired of replying to you, man. Gonna have to stop replying. You’re wasting my time.”

        WHO now recommends face-masks for general public. I think you are holding on to a dying argument that “facemasks” are useless. It doesn’t help that US is proving to the world how politicizing face-masks is doing to surging cases.

        Like

      5. I had promised myself I wouldn’t reply to your idiotic replies… Yet, here I am.

        “And you are interested in un-generalizable and wrong results that Authors has dismissed as invalid when these results (seem) to prove your point.”

        See, this is only one of numerous articles I based my opinion on (do you want more articles?). My argument was backed by more than one source, even if the authors of THAT one source you masturbated on expressed the limitations of THEIR results.

        “It appears you are having a hard time understand the limitations of the study and the generalizability of the results. When the authors said they found no statistical significant difference in viral loads between masked and unmasked subjects, then go on to say a major limitation of the study is: “the major limitation of our study was the large proportion of participants with undetectable viral shedding in exhaled breath for each of the viruses studied.” due to the methodology of data collection, it means that the results is not generalizable. The authors are admitting to take the results with a grain of salt. It doesn’t take a PhD to understand what the author is getting at.”

        See previous answer. Stop masturbating on that one article.

        “It doesn’t take a PhD to understand what the author is getting at.”

        You’re absolutely right. And I had no problem understanding what they wrote. But damn, do I have a hard time understanding your unstructured rambling.

        “You are having a hard time. Nowhere in my post did I confuse Aerosols and Droplets. Please show me where they was any confusion about Aerosols or Droplets in my post. You are create a false argument out of nothing, there was no confusion in anywhere about Aerosols and Droplets until you brought it up. Also, cool it with the ad hominem attacks.”

        Check out what an ad hominem attack is. Stop using words you don’t understand. But, why did you copy/paste an excerpt where the authors were talking about aerosols and droplets… if that wasn’t your point?

        “Most transmission of the coronavirus is coming from people who are asymptomatic and never develop any signs of the virus, a top official from the Department of Health and Human Services said Friday. https://www.cnbc.com/2020/07/17/top-hhs-official-says-most-of-the-coronavirus-transmission-is-from-asymptomatic-people.html”
        “We know that most of the spread are from asymptomatic people, particularly young adults, so you have to cast a wide net and I think we’re able to do that,” said Admiral Brett Giroir, the assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
        Dr. Anthony Fauci estimated that 25 to 50 percent of cases may be asymptomatic. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/06/world/coronavirus-live-news-updates.html
        So have the nation’s foremost experts saying most transmissions comes from asymptomatic spreaders.”

        CNBC? New York Times? Did you see the word I put between parenthesis: SCIENTIFIC? Since when are CNBC and the NYT scientific newspapers? But, it doesn’t matter because we agreed on that point (kind of) from the start.

        “You are having a hard time. Nowhere do I imply that knowing infection status is not important. That’s you putting words into people’s mouths.”

        Well, your answer (“NOPE”) seemed pretty definitive to me. And that is not me putting words into your mouth… You are dumb AND you have bad memory. Life must be hell for you. Although, as Nietzsche said: “blessed are the forgetful for they get the better even of their blunders.” You must be a very happy person, after all.

        ”So the reason you are confused is because you butt half-way into a conversation between me and Filmnoir. No wonder you are confused, nobody was replying to you until you interject into a conversation without knowing the premise of the conversation.”

        Well, considering Filmnoir was replying to my article… to which I had replied in turn… yes, I assumed I was involved…
        “nobody was replying to you”… except for the original poster, that is.
        “without knowing the premise of the conversation.” Well, the premise of the conversation was my article…
        You’re hilarious, halfwit.

        “Just so you are aware, over 40 million Americans have lost their jobs in the past year due to the pandemic. That’s close to 25%, as bad as the Great Depression level of unemployment. Everyone knows atleast one person that has been deeply affected by the virus, physically or economically. If you believe the majority of viral transmission is people walking around coughing into other’s faces, then you are terribly naive. The virus is silent spreader and most people don’t even know they are unknowingly spreading the virus. This is according to US assistant secretary of health, Admiral Brett Giroir, https://thehill.com/changing-america/well-being/medical-advances/507807-asymptomatic-spread-responsible-for-most-virus

        Admiral Brett Giroir, who is a pediatrician… Not exactly a specialist in viral diseases. Ah, but he’s the US Secretary of Health, so he must know everything, right? Besides, “The Hill”? Is that a new scientific newspaper? Oh, no, it’s a newspaper founded in 1994 “by Democratic power broker and New York businessman Jerry Finkelstein and Martin Tolchin, a former correspondent for The New York Times” (Wikipedia). Alright, a very independent, non-biased, scientific source, I see. But, again… we agreed on that point from the start.

        “The “Third Wave” is very explainable since not every in HK wears a face mask. According to public polling, 90% of HKers wear face-masks regularly in past 2 weeks. https://today.yougov.com/topics/health/articles-reports/2020/04/22/close-two-three-americans-expect-face-masks-be-nor
        Therefore, 10% of HKers * 7.5 million = 750,000 non-mask wearing vulnerable population.”

        First off, Yougov? Seriously? You’re taking the results of an Internet-based market research firm seriously? Anyway, the best part is that your mathematical demonstration (although flawed) proves my point (masks are useless), but you’re too dumb to realize it.
        You’re saying that 10% of HKers DO NOT wear face masks. Now, according to you, the face mask protects against Covid-19. Yet, only about 1,500 HKers got infected (many of whom being imported cases, not infected in HK). That is, 1,500 people out of 750,000 people who don’t wear face masks (assuming those 1,500 cases all come from people who didn’t wear face masks (evidence?) and got infected in HK (which is not the case)). In other words, 748,500 people who DO NOT wear face masks DID NOT get infected.

        In other words, assuming those 1,500 cases all came from people who didn’t wear face masks (evidence?) and got infected in HK (which is not the case), it would mean that only 0.2% of the population who DIDN’T wear a face mask got infected. Wow, we definitely need a face mask to protect us against such an effective virus!

        “58 cases is a negligible rounding error among 750,000 non-mask wearing people. You expect it to be significant higher in a “real” third wave but this is not entirely unexpected since not 100% of population wears masks, and you have different levels of compliance, adherence, and quality of masks, not all masks wearers or masks are equal.”

        In other words, without a face mask, only a minuscule fraction of the 750,000 people who DO NOT wear face masks have been infected. Thank you very much for your demonstration.

        “By two to one, Democrats (63%) are more likely than Republicans (31%) to say they always wear a face mask in public. https://today.yougov.com/topics/health/articles-reports/2020/06/26/americans-wearing-face-masks-should-be-mandatory”

        First off, Yougov, really? And second… In your previous answer you mentioned an 80-90% adherence among Democrats and a 50-60% adherence among Republicans. The numbers went down dramatically since then. By the way, did you notice the “are more likely than to say…” It doesn’t mean they actually do it… Even if this poll was credible.
        By the way, here’s what I read in your highly scientific New York Times: “Democrats were far more likely to live in counties where the virus has sickened and killed more people, while Republicans were more likely to live in counties that have been relatively unscathed by the illness.”
        How is that possible?

        By the way, Pewresearch also indicates that 86% of Black people and 87% of Hispanics in the US wear face masks against only 78% of White people.
        https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/06/23/most-americans-say-they-regularly-wore-a-mask-in-stores-in-the-past-month-fewer-see-others-doing-it/
        But… Blacks and Hispanics record a higher mortality rate due to Covid-19 than Whites? How the fuck is that possible? Wasn’t the face mask supposed to protect us?
        https://www.apmresearchlab.org/covid/deaths-by-race
        Moreover, in the vast majority of US states, the “% black cases” exceeds the “% Black population”. Yes, Black people are overrepresented in the number of cases reported in nearly each US state. Something doesn’t add up, here. Wasn’t the face mask supposed to protect us? Then why do African-Americans get infected by Covid-19 at a higher rate than White-Americans… when a higher ratio of African-Americans wear face masks?
        https://www.kff.org/other/state-indicator/covid-19-cases-by-race-ethnicity/?currentTimeframe=0&sortModel=%7B%22colId%22:%22White%20%25%20of%20Cases%22,%22sort%22:%22desc%22%7D

        “Up to 70% of New Yorkers wear face-masks. In New York, 67% say they’re wearing a mask at all times when they leave their house. At least 60% of residents in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland indicated that they were always wearing masks. Source: https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/26/politics/maskwearing-coronavirus-analysis/index.html”

        First off… 70% or 67% in New York? And as usual: CNN? Is that a scientific source? Second, 70% is far from “widespread”. Third, you said, in your previous reply, that “Scientific studies have modeled that you need atleast 80-90% of the population with strict adherence to face-masks in order to rapidly reduce transmission risk.” Uhm… but only 70% of New Yorkers wear face masks, yet New York experienced a drop in number of cases. So… That wouldn’t be enough to explain the rapidly reduced transmission risk. As has been the case for a few months now, something doesn’t add up in your explanation.

        “Compare that to significantly lower rates in Southern States( which are experience an Explosion in new cases), while Northeastern states have all but eliminated their coronavirus cases. A large part can be attributable to face mask usage.”

        Eliminated? Are you sure? Reduced, yes. But eliminated?

        Here are the latest number of new cases available in just a few Northern states:
        New York: 519 cases (19 July)
        Illinois: 1,173 cases (20 July)
        Massachusetts: 295 cases (20 July)
        Michigan: 489 cases (20 July)
        Pennsylvania: 711 cases (20 July)

        So, yes, reduced. But far from eliminated.

        “A large part can be attributable to face mask usage.”

        Evidence, please? You know those very states also took a whole host of other (actually effective) measures, right?

        “1% * 7.5 million = 75,000 cases.
        58 cases is STILL a negligible rounding error compared to 75,000 (which is what US experiences on a daily basis).”

        How come those 75,000 people who didn’t wear face masks didn’t get infected? Ah yes, right… your 80-90% adherence to face masks to reduce transmission risk… Well, then, again, how do you explain the Third Wave at all?

        “58 cases is negligible, US has 1300X times more per day.”

        Stop repeating yourself. Me compare HK in July with HK in April-May. You understand? Why is there a resurgence in HK, at all, even though the number remain low relative to other countries?

        “I’ve mathematically proven that you expect 75,000 to 750,000 cases given a 1% to 10% non-adherence to face masks. So increases in cases does not prove that face-masks don’t work, they just prove that there is a non-zero % of population that don’t wear face masks. You can’t draw any conclusion from this except that non-face mask wearing people are getting infected at a non-zero rate given a non-zero percentage of non-adherence.”

        Yes, you have mathematically proven that 75,000-750,000 NON-mask-wearing people DID NOT get infected (well, 73,500-748,500 considering the 1,500 people who did get infected). So, you proved that NOT wearing a face mask resulted in very low infection rates anyway. Moreover, if we take your “mathematical demonstration” for granted, what happened in April-May? Why were only a handful of cases reported each day in those two months? And how come the Third Wave coincides precisely with the relaxing of the social distancing measures and travel restrictions in HK?

        “Given a 1-10% non-compliance to face masks in HK, this is still significantly lower than expected number of infections you expect. All this proves is that 1-10% of HK population who don’t wear face masks are getting infected. When you have larger proportion of infection rates (like 20% of HK population infected when 99% wears masks), then you can begin to draw conclusions. You can’t draw conclusions with 58 cases is well within the 1-10% of non-face masks wears in Hong Kong.”

        I get your misunderstanding. You think I said the face mask was ineffective, when I said they are useless (yes, words do have a precise meaning, even though you don’t understand the difference). I said that the wearing of face masks had the same impact as the non-wearing of face masks; i.e. none. The third wave recorded in HK proves that the face mask didn’t prevent said wave. And if you think this wave is insignificant (notwithstanding the government of HK calling the situation critical) then look at the situation in California.

        Besides, you said that “All this proves is that 1-10% of HK population who don’t wear face masks are getting infected.” First off, do you have evidence that all the people infected are people who didn’t wear face masks? And 1% of the population WHO DON’T WEAR FACE MASKS are infected? Yes, if you accept the fact that only 1% of the population of HK doesn’t wear a face mask AND that all people infected were not wearing face masks AND that all cases recorded in HK were local cases, then only about 2% of HK’s non-mask-wearing population has been infected… 2%, that is a minuscule fraction of the (non-mask-wearing) population… And that is, taking into account a lot of “ifs”.

        “You can’t draw conclusions with 58 cases is well within the 1-10% of non-face masks wears in Hong Kong.”

        Well, when there is a sudden surge from 3 daily cases to around 60 daily cases, right after the relaxing of other (effective) measures, you should start asking yourself questions. For the 100th time, explain this sudden surge to me. Even HK’s officials have declared HK was in a critical situation. You’re the only one who claims that “58 cases is STILL a negligible rounding”.

        “None of your posts describes the huge disproportionate surge of cases within United States among Democrat US states (majority face-mask wearing) and Republican US states (majority non-face mask wearing).

        You know that the Northeastern states have been the worst-hit states since the onset of the epidemic in the United States. Did you expect the situation to grow even worse in New York, Delaware, Connecticut, etc. than it was in April?

        “There is no “closed borders” between Democrat and Republican US states, so none of your other posts applies in this situation. I wonder what is your explanation for explosive surge in Republican US states (Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia) which majority do not have face-masks? There is no “Closed borders” between US states, so your argument doesn’t even apply here.”

        California: Democrat
        Oregon: Democrat
        Washington state: Democrat
        New Mexico: Democrat
        Hawaii: Democrat
        Kansas: Democrat
        Kentucky: Democrat
        Louisiana: Democrat
        Montana: Democrat
        Nevada: Democrat
        North Carolina: Democrat
        Wisconsin: Democrat

        All of the above states are run by the Democratic party. Check out the evolution of Covid-19 cases in those states for the month of June-July. And explain this to me, and stop your cherry-picking.

        “WHO now recommends face-masks for general public. I think you are holding on to a dying argument that “facemasks” are useless. It doesn’t help that US is proving to the world how politicizing face-masks is doing to surging cases.”

        Interesting… Now that he has changed his opinion on the face mask, you’re referring to Trump. You know, Trump is one of those Republicans you seem to have a lot of disdain for. But, tell me, when did I ever seem to care about what Trump has to say?

        This being said, I love your argument: “I think you are holding on to a dying argument that “facemasks” are useless.” Now Trump says wearing a face mask is an act of patriotism my claim is a “dying argument”? You’re quite the epitome of the sheeple!

        Please stop replying. Stop wasting my time with links from newspapers and downright stupid arguments. Please.

        Like

    3. I won’t respond to ad hominem attacks and selective cherry picking of results.

      However, this blatant defamation of epidemiology needs to be addressed:

      “You’re saying that 10% of HKers DO NOT wear face masks.”

      The interpretation still holds if 1% or 0.01% or 0.001% of HKers DO NOT wear face-masks. All you have proven is that a non-zero non-compliance with face-masks results in non-zero infection rates. You don’t get a Nobel prize for proving the obvious. It’s not sufficient evidence to prove masks are not efficacious, since it’s within random chance that new cases can be among those non-mask wearers.

      “Now, according to you, the face mask protects against Covid-19.”

      That’s not only me, but WHO, CDC, FDA, CMS, and all of the world’s healthcare agencies, and all epidemiology experts in the world. Only you (not even doctor background) dismiss it based on flimsy evidence.

      “Yet, only about 1,500 HKers got infected (many of whom being imported cases, not infected in HK).”

      Yes, this is true.

      ” That is, 1,500 people out of 750,000 people who don’t wear face masks (assuming those 1,500 cases all come from people who didn’t wear face masks (evidence?) and got infected in HK (which is not the case)). ”

      Yes, the proportion of face-mask use among the 1,500 is unknown and not publically available. I’m saying that 1,500 cases is not out of ordinary, given significant non-face mask wearing population (n=750,000) in HK.

      “In other words, 748,500 people who DO NOT wear face masks DID NOT get infected.”

      You just proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that face-masks are efficacious against COVID.

      ┌──────────┬───────┬───────────┬───────────┐
      │ │ COVID │ NO COVID │ TOTAL │
      ├──────────┼───────┼───────────┼───────────┤
      │ Masks │ 1 │ 6,749,999 │ 6,750,000 │
      │ No Masks │ 1,499 │ 748,501 │ 750,000 │
      │ TOTAL │ 1,500 │ 7,498,500 │ 7,500,000 │
      └──────────┴───────┴───────────┴───────────┘

      Odds ratio: 0.0001 (95% CI: 0.0000 to 0.0005)
      Z-Statistic: 9.509
      Significant level: P<0.0001

      Thank you for proving face-masks is overwhelmingly statistically significant at prevention of COVID-19 with this example.

      Even if you flip it the other way:

      ┌──────────┬───────┬───────────┬───────────┐
      │ │ COVID │ NO COVID │ TOTAL │
      ├──────────┼───────┼───────────┼───────────┤
      │ Masks │ 1,499 │ 6,748,501 │ 6,750,000 │
      │ No Masks │ 1 │ 749,999 │ 750,000 │
      │ TOTAL │ 1,500 │ 7,498,500 │ 7,500,000 │
      └──────────┴───────┴───────────┴───────────┘

      Odds ratio: 166.5923 (95 % CI: 23.4506 to 1183.4685)
      z statistic 5.114
      Significance level P < 0.0001

      It's still statistically significantly difference at prevention of COVID-19 even if you flip it around.

      Like

      1. “I won’t respond to ad hominem attacks.”
        You won’t respond to something that was non-existent. That’s a good start.

        “and selective cherry picking of results.”
        … like the US states you carefully picked to prove that states run by the Democratic Party had declining numbers of daily cases and states run by the Republican Party had rising numbers… whilst avoiding ALL the Democratic states that showed rising numbers of daily cases? I understand. It would have been very hard to address your own inconsistency.

        “All you have proven is that a non-zero non-compliance with face-masks results in non-zero infection rates.”
        First off… you can’t prove a negative, you fucking idiot. And there are no less than three negatives in your statement. That is Science 101. Get back to school. And you still haven’t proven that a 100% compliance with face masks would result in a lowering of the infection rate. I mean, evidence, dude. Show me evidence.

        “You don’t get a Nobel prize for proving the obvious.”
        True… But you still have to prove it because… it is not obvious. Yes, man… even the “1+1=2” had to be proven. That, also, is Science 101.

        “since it’s within random chance that new cases can be among those non-mask wearers.”
        Just as much as they can be among mask-wearers.

        “WHO, CDC, FDA, CMS, and all of the world’s healthcare agencies, and all epidemiology experts in the world.”
        Yes… they have been changing opinions quite a lot those last few months, you know… And even they cannot provide us with EVIDENCE (you seem to struggle with that word) other than their Argument of Authority.
        By the way, did you notice how many of those agencies use the conditional form? And did you notice how much the face mask needs to be used in addition to the other (actually effective) measures to work?

        “I’m saying that 1,500 cases is not out of ordinary, given significant non-face mask wearing population (n=750,000) in HK.”
        So, you ARE assuming that all 1,500 cases recorded did not wear face masks, which there is no evidence of (evidence, again…). And you deliberately forgot that many of those 1,500 cases were IMPORTED! Anyway, let’s use your biased numbers. 1,500 cases out of 750,000 non-face-mask users, that represents a whopping 0.2% of non-mask-wearers. And you still haven’t PROVEN that wearing a face mask would have prevented those 1,500 cases.

        “You just proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that face-masks are efficacious against COVID.”
        Are you really that stupid? I simply said that 748,500 NON-mask-wearers DID NOT get infected. Now, you have to prove that those 1,500 cases would have been prevented if they had worn a mask (assuming those 1,500 cases were people who didn’t wear a face mask). Man, you should really work on your reading comprehension.

        And last but not least… your tables… they’re cute and all but… first off, ask your statistics teacher to tell you just how horribly flawed they are. I mean, your tables have absolutely no meaning in this context, you idiot! And, most important… you still haven’t proven that the 6,750,000 HKers who wore a mask were not infected… because they wore a mask.

        Like

  6. US has a recording breaking 75,000 new cases, the vast majority of the new cases are located in Republican Red States (Texas, Florida, Georgia, Arizona) because their Governors refused to issue a mandatory face-mask mandate and re-opened too early. Meanwhile, US states that have issued mandatory face-masks orders such as New York States, Massachusetts, and others have virtually eliminated the epidemic down to zero cases and zero deaths in the past two weeks.

    We can see that US States that have face-mask mandates have virtually contained the epidemic, while US States (mostly Republican Red states) who refused face-mask mandates and re-opened too early have explosive surge in new cases. Many Republicans refuse to wear face masks because of Trump’s influence, they have politicized the face-mask use based on ideology. It’s crazy in the US.

    Like

    1. Care to explain the situation in California (heavily Democratic state), where the use of a face mask is… mandatory… state-wide?

      https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/ncov2019.aspx

      Note the use of the conditional “could” when it comes to (cloth) face mask’s reduction of Covid-19 transmission.
      Note the need for STRONG defences when using face masks.
      Note that face masks INCREASE risks if you don’t use actual STRONG defences.

      Like

      1. A map of face-mask adherence by county-level in California reveals that not all California counties are adhering to face-mask mandate, especially in more Republican leaning areas of California.

        This is the most comprehensive map of face-mask adherence in the US, and given California is a humongous state with large population and vastly spread out population, it’s simply impossible to generalize California into a singularly monolith group. California is bigger than many US states combined.

        Like

      2. I just love your argument… which could be used to explain the situation in Texas or Florida as well…
        On top of that, you’re going to have to explain why the number of cases has dropped in New York, Vermont, Delaware, Massachusetts (and other northeastern states) but risen in California, Oregon, and Washington state. Look at the map you provided me with. These are all states in which the wearing of the face mask is relatively high.

        Like

      3. Yes, while California’s face-mask adherence is relatively higher (64%) than Texas (55%) and Florida (54%), California’s COVID incidence rate per capita is significantly lower than Texas (by 10%) and Florida (by 30%).

        Across 28 different US States, we see a clearly evident strong association between face-masks wearing at all times with significantly lower rates of COVID-19 reproduction.

        CNN’s Analysis across 28 states:

        https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/26/politics/maskwearing-coronavirus-analysis/index.html

        This is significant has Texas is 1.7 larger than Califronia in terms of territorial size, but it’s per capita incidence rate is much higher than California even adjusting for California’s higher population. This alone suggests California’s higher face-mask wearing rate plays a predictive role in COVID reproduction rate.

        Like

      4. CNN… Enough said.

        Anyway, I need to reply to your dumbasserie again.

        Why do you rely only on very oriented sources of information: CNN, CNBC, NYT? All of which being heavily liberal sources? The confirmation bias in your replies is very obvious. And I’m still waiting for scientific and/or official data… You know, like the CDC, for instance.

        “This is significant has Texas is 1.7 larger than Califronia in terms of territorial size”
        You know that both the Texan and Californian population concentrate in cities, right? The size of the states don’t matter if the population live in densely inhabited cities (Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio, El Paso, Austin, for instance). Or are you taking into account the uninhabited desert as well?

        “Yes, while California’s face-mask adherence is relatively higher (64%) than Texas (55%) and Florida (54%), California’s COVID incidence rate per capita is significantly lower than Texas (by 10%) and Florida (by 30%).”
        You know that the Californian counties were lauded in March and April for the measures (quarantines, confinements,…) they swiftly put in place and which kept the number of cases recorded in California very low. That was well before Californians started wearing face masks. So, of course the incidence rate is lower, since the different counties had taken adequate measures in March and April.
        But, hey, do you know what said counties also did just weeks before the July surge? They relaxed the measures that had kept the number of cases low until then. And… well, the face mask (no longer helped by the measures that actually worked) didn’t prevent the July surge.

        “Across 28 different US States, we see a clearly evident strong association between face-masks wearing at all times with significantly lower rates of COVID-19 reproduction.”
        For some reason, I clicked the link in your reply and… what a shock: “The Northeast leads the country in mask-wearing”. Yes, the Northeast. That is, the Middle Atlantic and New England. Those very regions of the United States that have recorded the highest rates of Covid-19 cases… in the world! We’re off to a great start!
        It is followed by the Pacific Division. Quick crash course in geography: the Pacific Division is made of California, Oregon, and Washington state. Now, go and check the evolution of Covid-19 cases in those three states. Yes, there is a surge in each one of those three states right now. Not exactly the best examples either.
        “Mask-wearing at all times when leaving the house at 34% is quite limited in the West North Central division.” What a shock! That’s also where the lowest number of Covid-19 cases have been recorded.
        To top it off: “This chart includes the 28 states for which there was a sufficient sample size to break out separately. Sample sizes for each of those states range from 75 to 764 survey respondents.” Wow! 75 respondent minimum? 764 maximum (out of a population of 40 million if it’s California)? Man, that sounds like a seriously conducted survey. But, then again, coming from CNN, who’d be surprised?

        Now, did they take into account the other measures that may have been taken in those 28 states to prevent the spread of the virus? Of course not. This is a CNN article, after all. Oh but, wait… “We’re dealing with small samples for a lot of states in the polling and there are plenty of potential confounding variables, so I don’t want to harp on this too much.” Yes, he did mention the “confounding variables” AND the small samples… But, hey, let’s not “harp” too much about this… yet publish heavily biased conclusions. The confirmation bias is strong with this one. Ah, CNN…

        Please double-check your sources next time. Or, better… Stop trying.

        Like

  7. Since you harp on “scientific sources”, I give you multiple sources that affirm the effiacy of face-mask and recommend face-masks to significant reduce transmission rates:

    • Centre for Health Protection (CHP; Hong Kong-English)
    • National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID; Singapore)
    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC; United States)
    • Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC-ASPC; Canada-English)
    • Agence de la santé publique du Canada (PHAC-ASPC; Canada-French)
    • European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC; Europe)
    • Santé publique France (SpF, France)
    • National Health Service (NHS; United Kingdom)
    • World Health Organisation (WHO, Global)

    The world’s top health agencies including the WHO, CDC, FDA, ECDC, CMS and world’s top infectious disease experts all recommend face-masks for general public.

    And before you dismiss these sources, these are the YOUR OWN sources you quoted in Jan 31’st infamous (“Face masks are useless” post. It’s interesting you would dismiss sources when it suits your interest.

    Like

    1. “It’s interesting you would dismiss sources when it suits your interest.”
      YES! Congratulations! That was one perfect strawman argument!

      Now… Why would I dismiss my sources? They don’t put a lot of emphasis on the use of the face mask. Did you double-check the sources you copy/pasted? I mean… seriously… all those conditionals. And, it seems like none of those agencies consider the face mask a top priority to stop the transmission of the disease either. Now, I double-checked (well, at this point, it’s more like a quintuple-check). Perhaps you should have too.

      CHP has always promoted the use of face masks. So, I doubt I would have used the recommendations of CHP in this particular context. Yes, man, context is everything…

      “The use of face masks MAY BE CONSIDERED when visiting busy, closed spaces,…”
      “Face masks SHOULD ONLY BE CONSIDERED as a COMPLEMENTARY measure…”
      https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications-data/infographic-using-face-masks-community

      “Wear a mask if you have respiratory symptoms such as a cough or runny nose”
      Note the use of “IF”
      https://www.ncid.sg/Health-Professionals/Diseases-and-Conditions/Pages/COVID-19.aspx

      “Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others”
      Yes… the cloth mask which efficiency has NEVER been tested… Let alone proven.
      https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html

      “Wearing a non-medical mask or face covering while out in public is recommended for periods of time when it is not possible to consistently maintain a 2-metre physical distance from others, particularly in crowded public settings”
      Note the “for periods of time when it is not possible to consistently maintain a 2-metre physical distance”
      https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks.html

      “En complément de ces gestes, porter un masque quand la distance d’un mètre ne peut être respectée”
      Let me translate for you (or copy/paste in Google translate): On top of those measures, wear a face mask WHEN A 1-METER DISTANCE CANNOT BE OBSERVED.
      https://www.santepubliquefrance.fr/dossiers/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-outils-de-prevention-destines-aux-professionnels-de-sante-et-au-grand-public

      “Wear something that covers your nose and mouth:
      on public transport
      when you go to hospital appointments or visit someone in hospital”
      OK… so, just in very specific settings.
      https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/

      “Masks should be used as part of a comprehensive strategy of measures to suppress transmission and save lives; the use of a mask alone is not sufficient to provide an adequate level of protection against COVID-19.”
      Yeah… WHO is not that enthusiastic about the efficiency of the face mask either. Did you see? “The use of a mask alone is not sufficient” Doesn’t sound like an organization that would bet its protection on the face mask.
      https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/question-and-answers-hub/q-a-detail/q-a-on-covid-19-and-masks

      You are a waste of time, man. I’m done with you. You really are too bad.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create your website at WordPress.com
Get started
%d bloggers like this: