Coronavirus, formally known as COVID-19, has now spread to more than 30 countries and as cases continue to swell, particularly in Europe, people have resorted to wearing face masks as a means of protection. Sales of face masks surged by 846 percent in the UK last month but a public health professor has branded the measure “completely useless”. Professor Robert Dingwall, a researcher at Nottingham Trent University, told Express.co.uk: “There is no point in wearing face masks because they don’t protect you.”
He said their main use of the masks is to prevent people who are already poorly from spreading the illness.
Professor Dingwall said: “There is a small value if you have a cough or a sneeze in preventing transmission from you to somebody else but it does not prevent you from inhaling virus particles.
“The weave is too coarse and the virus particles are so small they can jump straight through it.
“Or they go round the edge because it doesn’t fit tightly.”
Coronavirus London: Expert warns face masks are 'completely useless' (Image: Getty)
Coronavirus: There has been a surge in people buying face masks (Image: Getty)
The expert went on to say the only measure that is “genuinely protective” are the hazmat suits worn by medical professionals.
He added: “For the mass of the population wearing face masks achieves nothing and that’s the scientific evidence that’s the recommendation of the UK department of health.”
Instead, the professor advised Britons to practice basic personal hygiene and self-isolate if you become unwell and think you have a respiratory infection.
He also warned the prevalence of face masks provokes “an epidemic of fear alongside the epidemic of the virus”.
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