Health Department Recommends Universal Face Coverings To Reduce Spread Of COVID-19

The Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department strongly supports the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that everyone wear non-medical face coverings in public settings.

This recommendation was made as a way to further reduce the spread of COVID-19 and should not replace the recommendations to practice social distancing (staying 6 feet apart), to stay home, and to frequently wash and sanitize your hands. A non-medical face covering can be a scarf, a bandanna or other face covering.

Residents should wear masks or cloth face coverings in retail spaces, on public transportation and in other public settings when social distancing is difficult.  Face coverings are not a substitute for social distancing.

Residents still need to follow all “Stay-At-Home” orders and continue to maintain a safe distance from others when out at the grocery store or other essential businesses

Medical masks including N95 and other similar surgical apparatus need to be reserved for use by hospital staff, first responders and other health care providers to protect them and to make sure they are available when we need their help.

The recommendations are based on CDC guidance to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Research shows that the coronavirus can be spread by people before they have symptoms and by people who may never get symptoms. Wearing a cloth face covering helps protect people around you if you are infected but do not have symptoms.

Face coverings can be made out of household items such as t-shirts, towels and bandanas. The coverings should fit snugly, cover the nose and mouth, have multiple layers of fabric (cotton, linen or fleece), and be washable.  Masks should be washed with detergent and hot water and dried on a hot cycle frequently.  Face coverings should be removed carefully after use without touching eyes, nose, or mouth, and should be washed regularly.