Reuse face masks? DOH says Duterte referring to cloth masks | Inquirer News
disinfection by gasoline maybe a joke

Reuse face masks? DOH says Duterte referring to cloth masks

/ 11:35 AM July 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte was only referring to cloth masks when he gave people “tips” on how to disinfect and reuse face masks amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Health (DOH) said Wednesday.


In a speech aired Tuesday morning, Duterte said he would try his best to provide free face masks especially to those who cannot afford them.

He also claimed that face masks may be reused once disinfected using alcohol or even gasoline.


But Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said that the President was referring to reusable cloth masks and that the use of gasoline as disinfectant may be just one of his usual jokes.

“Sa sinabi ni Presidente, he’s mentioning really ‘yung mga reusable na ginagamit natin katulad ng cloth mask,” Vergeire told reporters in an online briefing.

(Of what the President had said, he’s mentioning really is the reusable we are using like cloth mask.)

“Alam niyo naman kapag nagsasalita si Presidente baka mga jokes niya lang ‘yun especially for gasoline,” she added.

(You know how the President say things, maybe this is one of his jokes especially for gasoline.)

However, Vergeire did not categorically say whether the President’s advice is backed by science.

According to the Health official, cloth masks, unlike the surgical and N95 masks, may be reused after washing.


“Pwede nating labhan at dapat labhan everyday. Pagkatapos gamitin sa isang araw kailangan labhan, papatuyuin, ibibilad sa araw at saka gagamitin ulit kinabukasan.

(We can wash it and this needs to be washed everyday.  After using it for a day, it should be washed, dried, put it under the sun and you can use it the next day.)

“Pero ‘yung mga surgical masks at N95 masks, it’s a single use only especially surgical masks hindi pwedeng hugasan kasi kapag hinugasan mo ‘yan may mga components ang masks natin na parang certain filtering mechanism na kapag hinugasan mo yan o binasa mo mawawala yung epekto.”

(But the surgical masks and N95 masks, it’s a single use only especially surgical masks, it cannot be washed because there are certain components in its filtering mechanism that disintegrate when you wash it or put it in water, it will lose its purpose.)

“Kapag pagkagamit mo after eight hours or kapag soiled na siya kailangan itapon or palitan na siya.”

(After using it for eight hours, or if it is soiled already, throw it away and use a fresh one.)

Vergeire, likewise, underscored the importance of properly disposing of used face masks to avoid possible transmission of the respiratory disease.

“Ang dami nating nakikita no, ‘yung mga mask nakatapon lang sa kalye, nakakalat sa iba’t ibang lugar. Kailangan kung paano natin i-treat ‘yung mga maduduming bagay at saka ‘yung ibang infectious waste, ganun din ang pagtreat natin at paghandle dito sa mga masks,” she said.

(We see a lot of masks being discarded in the street, it is everywhere in other areas. We should treat it like any other dirty things and like any infectious waste, we should treat it and handle it like that.)


For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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TAGS: Coronavirus, COVID-19, DoH, Face Masks, Health, NcoV, Outbreak, Philippines
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