Although healthcare professionals have relied on face masks to provide respiratory protection for decades, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has created some controversy among some groups who question the efficacy of masks in helping to prevent the transmission of the virus. In fact, several local governments have even prohibited school districts from requiring that masks be worn by students and staff.
In July 2021, both the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended universal indoor masking by students (age 2 and older), staff members, faculty, and visitors in kindergarten through grade 12 (K–12) schools, regardless of vaccination status, to reduce transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-191.
Although the issue of requiring masks in schools may be controversial in some areas, two recent scientific studies conducted by the CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control) have confirmed the effectiveness of masks in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The first study, Association Between K–12 School Mask Policies and School-Associated COVID-19 Outbreaks — Maricopa and Pima Counties, Arizona, July–August 2021, examined the association between school mask policies and school-associated COVID-19 outbreaks in 999 K–12 public non-charter schools open for in-person learning in two of Arizona’s most populous counties from July 15 to August 31, 2021. The study concluded that the odds of a school-associated COVID-19 outbreak in schools without a mask requirement were 3.7 times higher than those in schools with an early mask requirement – meaning one that was in place when the school year began.2
The second study, Pediatric COVID-19 Cases in Counties With and Without School Mask Requirements — United States, July 1–September 4, 2021, looked at pediatric COVID-19 cases in 520 U.S. counties with and without school mask requirements throughout a two-month period. That study found that counties with no school mask requirement experienced more than twice as many pediatric cases (35 for every 100,000) than counties with universal masking requirements (16 for every 100,0003).
Masks work. That’s why the mask experts at Medicom make masks just for kids.
The results of these two studies add to the growing body of evidence that mask mandates help stop the spread of COVID-19. That’s why the mask experts at Medicom, a company that has helped to protect healthcare professionals and their patients throughout multiple health crises such as avian flu, SARS, H1N1 and Ebola, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic, leveraged their three decades of infection control expertise to develop SafeMask® Premier Pediatric Earloop Face Mask, the first ASTM F2100 Level 1 mask designed to protect children aged 4 to 12, as well as the SafeMask® Architect™® JR ASTM2100 Level 1 Pediatric Earloop Face Mask*.
Why mask size matters for children
Mask size is important because when a mask is too big, it creates gaps that allow contaminants to enter and escape. Medicom SafeMask® pediatric face masks are designed to ensure optimal respiratory protection for children aged 4–12 by conforming to their smaller faces. They are made from soft, non-woven material that provides enhanced breathability and comfort and have smooth, stretchy, ultrasonically sealed earloops that prevent irritation and allow easy removal with less risk of self-contamination.
For more information about Medicom masks and our complete portfolio of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other infection control solutions, please visit our website.
Medicom now offers Canadian-made medical grade children’s and adult masks directly to consumers. Buy now at shop.medicom.com.
- CDC. COVID-19: guidance for COVID-19 prevention in K-12 schools. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2021. Accessed September 12, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/k-12-guidance.html
- Jehn M, McCullough JM, Dale AP, et al. Association Between K–12 School Mask Policies and School-Associated COVID-19 Outbreaks — Maricopa and Pima Counties, Arizona, July–August 2021. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. ePub: 24 September 2021. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm7039e1
- Budzyn SE, Panaggio MJ, Parks SE, et al. Pediatric COVID-19 Cases in Counties with and Without School Mask Requirements — United States, July 1–September 4, 2021. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. ePub: 24 September 2021. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm7039e3
*SafeMask Architect JR masks are currently available in Canada only.