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Addressing the States and Union Territories, the Centre has warned against the 'inappropriate' use of N95 masks with valve respirators by people, stating its use as 'detrimental' to the measures adopted for preventing the spread of coronavirus.
The Director General of Health Services (DGHS) in the Ministry of Health, Rajiv Garg issued a letter to the Principal Secretaries of health and medical education of states and UTs, saying that there has been inappropriate use of these masks by public other than the designated health workers.
The DGHS has directed the concerned authorities to encourage people to use homemade protective gear for face and mouth available on the website of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Earlier in April, the government issued an advisory on the use of homemade protective gear as and when required, especially while stepping out of the house.
In a step-by-step guide of making home-made masks, the advisory had also stressed that such face covers must be washed and cleaned each day, by keeping it in boiling water for at least five minutes. Sharing of masks and other protective gear is strictly prohibited.
The statement also mentioned that such masks were not meant for health workers or those working with or in contact with COVID-19 patients or those who are patients themselves as they are required to wear specified protective gear, Scroll had reported.
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