Towards the end of March 2020 we started seeing multiple organizations request homemade face masks to help deal with the face mask shortage caused by COVID-19. When we started looking for more information we realized that there wasn’t a central place for organizations in need to connect with those who can sew. After chatting with a dear friend who is a clinical internal medicine physician we decided to build this site.
To be clear, we recognize that homemade cloth face masks do not replace N95 masks and other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). However homemade face masks can be used by organizations for individuals in non-healthcare roles so that PPE can be reserved for health care providers. Additionally, in the worst case scenario where an organization runs out of approved face masks, the CDC has this to say:
In settings where facemasks are not available, HCP might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort. However, homemade masks are not considered PPE, since their capability to protect HCP is unknown. Caution should be exercised when considering this option. Homemade masks should ideally be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front (that extends to the chin or below) and sides of the face.
In addition to sewing masks for organizations requesting them, please take a moment to do the following:
Sign the Change.org US Physicians/Healthcare Workers For Personal Protective Equipment in COVID-19 Pandemic
Contact your elected officials. If you are in the United States, you can visit Who is My Representative to find who who they are and how to contact them.
Use the following hashtags #GetMePPE and #PPEIsNotOptional
Check out Project N95 and see if you can volunteer
Visit US Digital Response and see how you can help.
– The FMSB Team