Covid UK: Goldman Sachs bankers will be required to wear masks

Covid UK: Goldman Sachs bankers will be required to wear masks

Bankers for Goldman Sachs who are returning to London HQ next week will be required to wear masks in the office despite easing of Covid rules on July 19

  • Bankers for Goldman Sachs will still be required to wear face masks in the European headquarters in London
  • Goldman boss Richard Gnodde said coverings will be mandatory from Monday, the so-called Freedom Day
  • He told the BBC that Goldman will not require staff to be vaccinated to come back into the workplace 
  • Government has said people will still be expected to wear masks in certain public spaces, like transport 

Bankers for Goldman Sachs who are returning to its £1billion European headquarters in London on Monday will still be required to wear face masks in the office despite legal restrictions being ditched on the so-called ‘Freedom Day’. 

Richard Gnodde, the boss of Goldman Sachs International, said coverings will be mandatory in the building while the bank ‘manages our exit from this in a cautious and appropriate way to make sure our people feel comfortable’.

Speaking to the BBC on the day the London headquarters were visited by Prince Charles, Mr Gnodde revealed that Goldman will not require staff to be vaccinated to come into work, and hopes that 70 per cent of UK staff will return to the office in the coming weeks.

While people will no longer be required by law to wear masks from Monday, the Government has said people will still be expected to wear them in certain situations and some businesses, travel operators and politicians have said that masks will still be necessary to use services. 

He said: ‘For us we’ve been very clear. The centre of gravity for our workforce is going to be in our buildings and in London it will be this building. We believe its really important to have our people together. 

‘The percentage of the population that is double-vaxxed continues to go up, we’ll see where it ends up. I’m sure there will be some members of our population that aren’t, we continue to focus very much on securing a safe workplace.

‘People will still be wearing masks in the building on Monday. We’ll see how this evolves over time, but we’ll continue to manage our exit from this in a cautious and appropriate way to make sure our people feel comfortable. 

‘Our focus is going to be on creating a safe environment for people to feel comfortable.’ 

In the latest twist of the coronavirus crisis: 

  • A record half-a-million Britons were sentenced to ‘pingdemic’ lockdown last week, figures revealed, amid concerns NHS Covid contact-tracing app could force millions off work; 
  • A scathing letter which demanded Freedom Day be delayed and was backed by more than 1,200 ‘experts’ allowed people with no scientific credentials to sign it, MailOnline revealed;
  • Britons were forced to cancel holiday plans in droves as Ibiza, Majorca and Menorca are set to be scrubbed from the ‘green list’;
  • Face mask shambles continued as police were told they must keep wearing them while on the beat;
  • Study revealed people given AstraZeneca’s Covid jab were less likely to develop antibodies than those who received Pfizer’s;
  • Vaccines Tsar Kate Bingham was revealed as one of 40,000 double-jabbed Britons forced to put holiday plans on hold after taking part in Novavax trial that is still not recognised by NHS or EU;
  • Pub in Norwich becomes the first in the country to ban punters who can’t prove they’ve been jabbed.

Richard Gnodde, the boss of Goldman Sachs International, said coverings will be mandatory in the building while the bank ‘manages our exit from this in a cautious and appropriate way to make sure our people feel comfortable’

Bankers for Goldman Sachs who are returning to its £1billion European headquarters in London on Monday will still be required to wear face masks in the office despite legal restrictions being ditched on the so-called ‘Freedom Day’

Speaking to the BBC on the day the London headquarters were visited by Prince Charles, Mr Gnodde revealed that Goldman will not require staff to be vaccinated to come into work, and hopes that 70 per cent of UK staff will return to the office in the coming weeks.

The coronavirus restrictions which will be removed from July 19 

England’s mask shambles descended further into farce today as police officers were told to keep wearing them after Monday’s end to lockdown.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) has written to all forces advising that existing infection control measures should continue, despite face coverings no longer being required by law.

It came after the Government’s own advice to businesses on reopening work premises from July 19 last night recommended bosses encourage the wearing of masks indoors.

The First Ministers of Scotland and Wales have also said they will keep laws requiring masks to be worn in most indoor settings after their loosen their own lockdowns next week.

And London mayor Sadiq Khan has already ruled that masks will be required on London transport.

Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford said today that Boris Johnson’s decision to make masks optional in England – and rely on the common sense of the public – was an ‘outlier’ and it would be better if England followed his and Nicola Sturgeon’s example.

But Cabinet minister Robert Jenrick today insisted that as the vaccine rollout continues it is right to allow individuals and businesses to make their own judgments about what precautions to take.

 

Government guidance for businesses ahead of so-called Freedom Day on Monday has been savaged as ‘confusing chaos’ over its wishy-washy recommendations and advice.

Much of the content of the new document is strikingly similar to the old lockdown legislation, except this time each part starts with the word ‘consider’. It has left business owners facing decisions on whether to impose Covid-secure measures it cannot enforce on staff or customers under law.

Most baffling is how the Prime Minister’s promises to lift nearly all lockdown restrictions are so different to advice issued by the government. Dr Roger Barker, policy director at the Institute of Directors, said: ‘Like everybody else, businesses across the country having been awaiting ”freedom day” with bated breath, but instead we have had a series of mixed messages and patchwork requirements from Government that have dampened that enthusiasm.

‘Return to work or continue to stay at home. Throw away your masks or continue to wear them. Today’s long-awaited guidance from Government has done little to dispel that confusion.

‘Business leaders are understandably confused as to the legal status that this guidance has and are concerned about vulnerability under health and safety legislation, as well as the validity of their insurance.’

Vanita Parti, founder Of Blink Brow Bar, branded the guidance ‘a mess’.

She told Radio 4: ‘It’s all very confusing because we weren’t allowed to open with the rest of retail last summer when lockdown eased and it made sense for us to do so because we follow the highest of hygiene protocol.

‘Now they’re saying actually they’re merging the rest of you with retail and nobody needs to wear masks so we’re scratching our heads a little bit but of course it makes absolute sense for us to wear masks, we are asking our therapists to continue to do so and we can only recommend that our customers do so.

‘It puts them (staff) at risk and close contact services are close contact and of course beauty industry is very hygienic anyway but this is where masks really make sense.

‘I think we will continue to wear masks as an industry because customers feel a lot more comfortable and so do our therapists but again I think it’s a bit woolly, no-one has really looked at it in detail, slightly forgotten and it’s easier just to lump us all together.’

Documents released online just days before the July 19 unlocking also suggest workplaces keep social distancing measures like plastic screens and back-to-back desks in a bid to placate nervous workers.

Businesses should consider keeping staff wearing masks indoors even after lockdown ends, according to new government Covid guidance released tonight.

They appear to suggest firms introduce ‘fixed teams or partnering’ to reduce the threat from coronavirus spreading through their workforce, – which has echoes of Covid bubbles in place in this year’s full lockdown.

Table service in pubs and widespread working from home should also continue, the guidance suggests.

The guidance appears likely to set the scene for furious battles between employees and their staff in the days and weeks ahead about how often they can return to their primary workplace and how it should be set up.

It tells bosses: ‘You should discuss a return to the workplace with workers, and trade unions to make working arrangements that meet both business and individual needs. Employers and others must continue to follow statutory health and safety requirements, conduct a risk assessment, and take reasonable steps to manage risks in their workplace or setting.’

Britain has recorded another 48,553 Covid cases in the biggest daily surge since January

No jab, no drink! Pub becomes first in Britain to BAN punters who can’t prove they’ve had at least one dose of vaccine 

Landlord Philip Cutter, 50, has been subjected to vile abuse since an anti-vax forum highlighted his new rule at The Gardeners Arms pub in Norwich, Norfolk

A pub has become the first in Britain to ban punters who can’t prove they’ve had at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine.

Landlord Philip Cutter, 50, has been subjected to vile abuse since an anti-vax forum highlighted his new rule at The Gardeners Arms pub in Norwich, Norfolk.

He decided to bring in the policy after two of his bar staff tested positive for Covid, forcing him to shut for ten days.

In a trend mirroring the national picture, Covid cases are on the rise in Norwich, with 336 people reporting a positive test between July 8 and July 14.

This was an increase of some 89.8 per cent compared to the previous seven days, figures show.

Nationwide, positive tests rose by nearly a third in a week yesterday to 43,302, with infections now at their highest level since January 15.

And the number of people who died with the virus also increased by 48.5 per cent in a week yesterday to 49, up from 33 last Wednesday.

Unions and employers hit out at the guidance with a warning that it is a ‘recipe for chaos’. The guidance is for ‘offices, factories, plants, warehouses, labs and research facilities and similar indoor environments’.

On masks it notes their use will no longer be mandatory indoors in England. But it adds: ‘Consider encouraging the use of face coverings by workers (for example through signage), particularly in indoor areas where they may come into contact with people they do not normally meet.

‘This is especially important in enclosed and crowded spaces. When deciding whether you will ask workers or customers to wear a face covering, you would need to consider the reasonable adjustments needed for staff and clients with disabilities.

‘You would also need to consider carefully how this fits with other obligations to workers and customers arising from the law on employment rights, health and safety and equality legislation.’

Pubs and restaurants are asked to consider maintaining table service, even though Monday was meant to herald the return of buying drinks at the bar. The guidance also calls for venues to consider the introduction of Covid passes, which would see people granted entry only if they have had both vaccine doses, or recently tested negative for the virus.

In addition, it states: ‘You can also encourage the use of outside space where practical, in particular for higher risk activity such as exercise or when people are singing or raising their voices.’

Hugh Osmond, founder of the restaurant group Various Eateries, added: ‘What was billed as Freedom Day is actually going to be Chaos Day. I can’t see how anyone is supposed to know what to do… it’s Wednesday and I can’t tell you what we’re going to do on Monday.’

A retail industry source added: ‘You can’t force people to wear a mask in a shop. You risk having staff being attacked for ruining someone else’s Freedom Day.’

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: ‘We all want the economy to unlock as soon as possible, but these new back-to-work safety guidelines are a recipe for chaos and rising infections.

‘They have been published without proper consultation with unions or employers, just two full working days before restrictions end on Monday. Instead of providing clear and consistent guidance on how to keep staff safe at work, the government is abandoning workers and employers.

‘As infection rates surge, every employer must by law carry out a thorough risk assessment and take action to keep their workers safe. But these inadequate guidelines will leave many employers with more questions than answers and worried about their liability if they get things wrong.’

Ms O’Grady said wearing face coverings should remain a legal requirement on public transport and in shops.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has urged the public to be ‘cautious’ when Covid lockdown restrictions are lifted. He said it would be up to businesses to decide whether they want customers to continue with precautions such as the wearing of face masks.

‘Although we are in an immeasurably better position thanks to the vaccine programme, we are still very much living with the virus and we are going to be for a long time, so we do need to exercise caution,’ Mr Jenrick told Sky News.

‘We are asking every member of the public to be cautious, to come to sensible judgments about, for example, the wearing of masks in close contact in indoor spaces and to businesses as well to consider whether they need to apply those restrictions.

‘In my experience, having talked to hundreds of businesses over the course of the last year, this is the sort of discretion they want reflecting the fact that businesses are in a very different situation and a one-size-fits-all approach backed by the force of the law isn’t sensible when we are moving into a period now where, in all likelihood, we are going to be living with the virus for a long time.’

WHERE DO I NEED TO WEAR A MASK AFTER RESTRICTIONS EASE? 

What are the rules on masks in England going to be?

When the remaining restrictions in England are lifted on Monday (July 19) people will no longer be required by law to wear face coverings in certain settings.

But the latest guidance, issued on Wednesday, says the Government ‘expects and recommends’ masks to be worn by workers and customers in crowded, enclosed spaces such as public transport.

Does this mean that people will not need to carry masks with them anymore?

It is probably best not to be too quick to throw away your mask.

Health leaders, local politicians, shop bosses and transport chiefs have all said that they will continue to require or encourage people to wear face coverings.

This means that face coverings may be required in some premises, on some bus and train services, hospitals and GP surgeries.

Do people need masks to go to the shops then?

Supermarket chain Sainsbury’s on Wednesday said it would encourage all customers to continue wearing face coverings from July 19 if they can.

Tesco, Asda, Lidl, Morrisons and Waitrose have since come out to say they will also encourage customers and staff to continue wearing masks in their supermarkets from when restrictions ease.

Staff and customers at Waitrose and John Lewis have also been recommended to continue wearing masks but the John Lewis Partnership said it will ultimately be up to individual judgment.

What about going to a hospital or GP appointment?

Staff, patients and visitors in all NHS settings must continue to wear face coverings and observe social distancing, Public Health England (PHE) has said.

PHE said infection prevention measures and visiting guidance are set to continue across all health services including hospitals, GP practices, dental practices, optometrists and pharmacies, to ensure patients and staff are protected.

Staff, patients and visitors will be expected to continue to follow social distancing rules when visiting any care setting, as well as using face coverings and other personal protection equipment.

How about public transport?

Face coverings will continue to be compulsory in some locally operated public transport spaces.

People in West Yorkshire and South Yorkshire will have to continue wearing face masks in bus stations operated by the combined authorities, while passengers using the Metro in the North East will also be required to wear a face covering.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has also said face coverings will be required on Transport for London (TfL) services as a ‘condition of carriage’.

This means enforcement officers would be able to deny access or eject passengers found to be non-compliant while using the TfL network.

Face coverings will also remain compulsory on Greater Manchester’s Metrolink tram services and the Heathrow Express.

What about other transport providers?

Cross-Channel train firm Eurostar and airlines such as British Airways, easyJet and Ryanair will continue to require passengers to wear face coverings from July 19, while Heathrow Airport said that face-coverings will continue to be mandatory.

But the train industry body the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) announced that all domestic train operators, such as Avanti West Coast, TransPennine Express and Southeastern, will not require passengers to wear face coverings.

It said rail companies will ask people to follow the Government guidance and, out of respect for others, wear face coverings if an indoor setting is busy.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT), which represents major bus and coach operators such as National Express and Megabus, has also said that its members will not mandate the wearing of face coverings from Monday.

Does this mean different parts of the country will have different rules on public transport?

Elected regional mayors across England have warned that without a continued national mandate there would be a ‘ridiculous mismatch’ of rules across the country that will be ‘confusing’ for passengers.

The Labour metro mayors for West Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, North of Tyne, West of England and South Yorkshire have urged the Government to continue to make face coverings compulsory on all public transport beyond the lifting of restrictions.

What are the rules in Scotland and Wales?

In Wales, face coverings will continue to be required by law in most indoor public places and on public transport when coronavirus restrictions are lifted next month, while in Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said face covering measures are likely to remain for ‘some time to come’.

Wales plans to ease some restrictions on July 17, with almost all coronavirus measures lifted from August 7, but it will remain the law to wear a face mask on public transport and in most indoor settings.

The Welsh Government will lift the requirement for people to wear masks as soon as the public health situation allows, First Minister Mark Drakeford has said.  

Vaccines AND masks are best way to protect ourselves after Freedom Day, says scientist behind Oxford University’s Covid vaccine

Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, who helped develop the AstraZeneca jab, said wearing a face covering to protect other people in indoor settings is ‘a sign of respect’

Vaccines and masks are the best way to protect ourselves after ‘Freedom Day’ on Monday, one of the scientists behind the Oxford University Covid vaccine claimed today.

Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert, one of the brains behind the AstraZeneca jab, said wearing a covering in crowded indoor settings was ‘a sign of respect’.

She admitted masks do little to protect the wearer, but claimed they may prevent some people from passing the virus onto others.

Dame Sarah said she will follow Professor Chris Whitty’s advice to continue to wear masks when they are no longer a legal requirement next week.

Her comments come amid fears that mask-wearing etiquette could spark a culture war post ‘Freedom Day’ on Monday. 

Ministers and scientific advisers are still encouraging people to don a mask in crowded spaces where the risk of Covid is higher – such as on trains or busy shops.

Adding to confusion, London Mayor Sadiq Khan revealed that face coverings will still be compulsory on the Tube, buses and taxis in the capital.   

Dame Sarah told Good Morning Britain: ‘None of the protective measures are completely effective on their own and we get the best protection when we link up different ways of protecting ourselves.

‘So if we get everybody who is eligible for the vaccine to have the vaccine, if we wear a facemask indoors in crowded areas.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps backed London Mayor Sadiq Khan ‘s move to keep them compulsory on the Tube, buses and taxis in the capital. Pictured: People wear face masks at Waterloo Station in London today

Boris Johnson called for continued mask-wearing in busy indoor settings such as trains, supermarkets and cinemas despite the mandate being lifted on Monday

Masks ‘probably won’t do any good’ from July 19 because not enough people will wear them, top SAGE expert claims 

Wearing a mask after Freedom Day ‘probably won’t do any good’, one of the Government’s top scientific advisers claimed today. 

Professor Graham Medley accepted there was still a lack of evidence about how useful masks are but said is was his personal belief they only work when ‘everybody’ wears one.  

From July 19, people in England will no longer be legally required to wear a face covering on public transport or in shops, restaurants and other indoor spaces.

But ministers and scientific advisers are still encouraging people to don a mask in crowded spaces where the risk of Covid is higher.

Professor Medley told the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme: ‘I understand the Government’s reluctance to actually mandate it. 

‘But on the other hand, if it’s not mandated it probably won’t do any good.’

Professor Medley is the chairman of SAGE’s modelling group SPI-B, whose forecasts pointed towards a smaller wave this autumn and gave ministers the confidence to press ahead with the final unlocking.

He added: ‘I personally will wear a mask to protect other people. I think it’s quite a reasonable thing to do.

It doesn’t have a huge imposition in terms of economic impact or in terms of freedom, and I think there is evidence to suggest it does good, but only if everybody does it.’

‘So I think that, without the mandation, then we end up with a situation where even if the majority of people, let’s say 70 per cent of people wear a mask, will that actually do any good because of the 30 per cent who don’t? I think that is something which still needs to be determined and discussed.’

There is enough evidence to show masks offer at least some protection against catching and spreading Covid but the extend of this protection is still unknown. 

‘Remember, we wear a mask to protect other people — they’re not to protect us so much as to protect other people from us, from the risk that we might be infected.’

‘And I think it’s a sign of respect, if you’re in a situation where you might be able to transmit the virus to somebody else, to keep the mask on.

‘I will follow Chris Whitty’s advice to wear a mask in indoor crowded situations, or if anybody else was particularly wanting me to wear a mask then I would.’

Professor Catherine Green, who was also part of the team that developed the vaccine, said: ‘The vaccine is a seatbelt, it’s keeping everybody around us safe. 

‘There’s no reason not to wear a mask too — sometimes two safety measures are better than one, and not everybody can take the vaccine.’

The experts backing of masks come as Mr Khan broke ranks by announcing he wanted to keep masks compulsory on public transport in London despite the the end of legal restrictions across England from Monday.  

The Transport Secretary Grant Shapps played down the tensions this morning saying he had ‘expected’ operators to put in place ‘conditions of carriage’ to ensure that passengers were safe on public transport.

Passengers on trains in and out of London terminals will not need to wear masks during their journeys but must while travelling around the city in the increasingly confused situation. 

Unions have warned that the ‘botched’ approach to setting the rules will leave railway workers facing the threat of violence from angry customers. 

Mr Khan told BBC Breakfast that around 400 enforcement officers would be deployed to check people are still wearing masks in the capital.

‘It’s not perfect. [It] would have been better if national rules applied across the country to avoid any confusion,’ he said.

‘The government for their own reasons have decided not to do that.’

Asked about the lack of restrictions on services from outside the city, Mr Khan said: ‘A number of services that come into London are not my responsibility. 

‘If you are in London, you need to follow the rules.’

SAGE adviser Professor Graham Medley, chairman of the modelling group Spi-B, yesterday said he would continue to wear a covering next week — but warned it ‘probably won’t do any good’ unless people are forced to. 

There is enough evidence to show masks offer at least some protection against catching and spreading Covid but the extend of this protection is still unknown. 

Speaking about the move to drop masks from next week, Professor Medley yesterday backed the idea of keeping masks mandatory.

He told the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme: ‘I understand the Government’s reluctance to actually mandate it. 

‘But on the other hand, if it’s not mandated it probably won’t do any good.’

He added: ‘I personally will wear a mask to protect other people. I think it’s quite a reasonable thing to do.

It doesn’t have a huge imposition in terms of economic impact or in terms of freedom, and I think there is evidence to suggest it does good, but only if everybody does it.’

‘So I think that, without the mandation, then we end up with a situation where even if the majority of people, let’s say 70 per cent of people wear a mask, will that actually do any good because of the 30 per cent who don’t? 

‘I think that is something which still needs to be determined and discussed.’

WHAT HAVE STUDIES SHOWN ABOUT FACE MASKS AND COVID? 

Research on how well various types of masks and face coverings protect against coronavirus has varied but experts and politicians have generally leaned towards the idea that the chance of some protection is better than none.

In the UK, face coverings were first made mandatory in for public transport in June and later for shops and other indoor spaces in July. 

Here’s what studies have shown so far about whether masks work: 

FACE MASKS LOWER VIRUS R RATE (JANUARY 2021)

Researchers at Boston University in the US found wearing face masks is an effective way to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

The study, published in the journal Lancet Digital Health, found a 10 per cent rise in self-reported mask wearing is associated with a three-fold increase in the odds of keeping the R number – the number of others each person with coronavirus infects – below 1.

Co-author of the study Ben Rader, of Boston Children’s Hospital and Boston University, said: ‘An important finding of this research is that mask wearing is not a replacement for physical distancing.’ 

INFECTIOUS DROPLETS WILL STILL SLIP THROUGH (DECEMBER 2020)

Scientists at New Mexico State University in the US found wearing a cloth mask may not shield the user totally from coronavirus because infected droplets can slip through, but it would significantly reduce how many.

‘Wearing a mask will offer substantial, but not complete, protection to a susceptible person,’ said Dr Krishna Kota, an associate professor at the university who led the research.

The study found while all masks blocked at least 95 per cent of droplets from coughs and sneezes – there was still a risk of the disease being passed on.

A MASK ‘WILL ALWAYS BE BETTER THAN NOTHING’ (DECEMBER 2020)

Research by the University of Massachusetts Lowell and California Baptist University in the US found wearing a used three-layer surgical mask can reduce the number of small droplets that are released into the air by two thirds.

Co-author Dr Jinxiang Xi said: ‘It is natural to think that wearing a mask, no matter new or old, should always be better than nothing.

‘Our results show that this belief is only true for particles larger than five micrometers, but not for fine particles smaller than 2.5 micrometers.’ 

MASK-WEARERS EQUALLY LIKELY TO CATCH VIRUS (NOVEMBER 2020)

A study by Copenhagen University Hospital in Denmark suggested face masks may only offer the wearer limited protection against Covid infection.

Researchers found there was no statistically significant difference in the number of people who contacted the virus in a group wearing masks in public compared to a group that did not do so.

The study was carried out in April and May when Danish authorities did not recommend wearing face coverings. 

MASK LEADS TO THOUSANDS FEWER COUGH DROPLETS (AUGUST 2020)

Research by Edinburgh University in Scotland suggested cloth face masks are effective at reducing the amount of droplets spread by coughing or sneezing.

The findings suggest a person standing two metres from someone coughing without a mask is exposed to 10,000 times more droplets than from someone standing half a metre away wearing a basic single layer mask. 

Professor Paul Digard, of the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute, said: ‘The simple message from our research is that face masks work.

‘Wearing a face covering will reduce the probability that someone unknowingly infected with the virus will pass it on.’

N95 MEDICAL MASKS COULD PREVENT 99% OF SPREAD (AUGUST 2020)

A study by Duke University in North Carolina, US, found N95 masks are the most effective masks at reducing the spread of Covid-19.

The research published in the journal Science Advances, studied 14 types of face coverings.

Co-author Dr Eric Westman said: ‘If everyone wore a mask, we could stop up to 99 percent of these droplets before they reach someone else.

‘In the absence of a vaccine or antiviral medicine, it’s the one proven way to protect others as well as yourself.’ 

SURGICAL COVERINGS JUST AS GOOD AS N95 MASKS (MARCH 2020)

A University of Oxford study published on March 30 last year concluded that surgical face masks are just as effective at preventing respiratory infections as N95 respirators for doctors, nurses and other health care workers. 

N95 respirators are made of thick, tightly woven and moulded material that fits tightly over the face and can stop 95 percent of all airborne particles, while surgical masks are thinner, fit more loosely, and more porous.

The Oxford analysis of past studies – which has not yet been peer reviewed – found that surgical masks were worth wearing but any face mask is only as good as other health and hygiene practices.

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