About the project
Our goal is to make alternate personal protective equipment (PPE) to help preserve the dwindling supply of N95 masks for front-line healthcare workers.
Who are these for? Our current focus is on supplying this secondary PPE to folks who have none: people in homeless shelters; in-home healthcare workers; grocery workers; and so on.
We’re publishing actionable information to make it easier for other makers to replicate this project.
This is a harm reduction effort.We know that the cloth masks we’re describing do not provide the same protection that N95 or other PPE provides. They do provide some protection, though — mostly in slowing the release of aerosolized droplets of the virus.
Reuse or single use? While optimally these masks can be washed and reused, reuse is less important than proper use.
Where am I getting my PPE related information. I am working via several large social networks and published groups including Open Source Covid-19 Medical Supplies.
Getting your Masks to the Right folks
DO NOT DROP OFF RANDOM MASKS at medical facilities. It does more harm than good. Do verify that the healthcare people and other providers want what you have to give. Better yet before you make, check and make what they want.
Guide to local distribution
Before you call the hospital or other facility, check the list below and/or with your local networks (facebook, social, google it!) as well as these resources to find out what facilities and groups need:
Disclaimer: This is a harm reduction effort. Even when made completely to spec, DIY cloth masks cannot replace N95 masks or official medical PPE and do not guarantee protection from any disease. Use these instructions at your own risk.
Even with the awareness that we have about the superiority of N95 masks, there is significant information to show that barriers can help. When made and worn correctly, barriers can trap a significant amount of the particulate.
Given the worldwide shortage of masks, our goal is to provide the most vulnerable in our population (nursing home and hospice residents and staff, unhoused folks, grocery workers, delivery staff) with an option.
This will free up proper PPE for healthcare workers… because without them nothing else will matter. More from the CDC