While evidence suggests that a face covering will not protect the person who is wearing it, it could help protect anyone else they come into contact with if they are infected but aren’t showing symptoms of Covid-19. It is also important to note that face coverings are not the same as face masks, which should be worn by frontline workers who come into close contact with others.
The advice urges members of the public to consider wearing face coverings in situations where they may come into contact with people that they do not live with. This is particularly enclosed spaces, such as on public transport or in some shops. Certain health care settings may require you to wear a face covering.
The council has created a handy, step-by-step guide to show people how they can make their own face covering out of an old T-shirt – check out the download section.
Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "Face coverings do not replace social distancing, good hand washing and good hygiene as the most effective measures we should all adopt to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
"However, if you do need to go out and about, please consider wearing a face covering if you are somewhere where you will be around other people. It may not protect you, but it could help protect others if you have coronavirus but don't realise it.
"You can make your own face coverings at home and it can be as simple as a scarf or bandana that ties behind the head, as long as it covers your mouth and nose and allows you to breathe comfortably.
“Knowing how to use a face covering safely is important, for example if you touch your face covering with your hands you may spread the virus.”
To safely wear face coverings, people should wash their hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and taking it off, avoid touching their eyes, nose and mouth at all times, and wash it after every use. When taking the face covering off, do not touch the part that has been in contact with the nose or mouth. Used face coverings should be stored in a plastic bag until they can be washed.
Meanwhile residents are reminded they must continue to follow social distancing guidelines to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Everyone must:
- stay at home as much as possible
- work from home if you can
- limit contact with other people
- keep your distance if you go out
- wash your hands regularly
- stay at home and self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus, including a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
The latest information and guidance around coronavirus is available at GOV.UK and on the council’s own coronavirus pages at Coronavirus advice and information. There’s lots of advice on how people can protect themselves and their families from coronavirus from the NHS.
The council’s Stay Safe, Be Kind campaign offers clear and simple advice about how people can help themselves, and how they can support others who may be particularly vulnerable at this time. For more information, please visit Stay Safe, Be Kind.