CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Travelers now have the option to ditch the mask on U.S. flights after a federal judge lifted the nationwide mask mandate on public transportation.
However, if you feel more comfortable flying with a mask on will it still protect you against COVID-19?
Can wearing a mask help protect you against COVID-19, if others around you aren't wearing one?
Yes, wearing a mask can help protect you from getting COVID-19 even if others around you are not wearing one.
WHAT WE FOUND:
After the mandate was dropped, the CDC released a statement saying they continue to recommend people wear masks in indoor public transportation settings.
"Even if only one person is wearing a mask, they are very protective," Dr. Kohli said.
Both Dr. Kohli and Dr. Ohl say in these situations, it should be a good fitting and high-quality mask that will provide the most protection.
"An N95 protects us so well that you can wear one yourself and protect yourself," Dr. Ohl said.
"I would recommend a KN95 or an N95 mask," Dr. Kohli said.
A study published in December of 2021 found the risk of infection was 90% when someone wore a surgical mask but talked to someone who was infected and did not wear a mask for 30 minutes.
If that person wore an N95 mask and talked to someone who was infected, that infection rate was cut down to 20% after an hour of speaking.
”The CDC has formally looked at one-way masking, and what they found is that people who wore an N95 on a regular basis had an 83% lower risk of testing positive for COVID,” Dr. Kohli said.
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