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Ghanaians are being advised against the use of only face shields without nose masks since experts say it does not safeguard one against the coronavirus when used alone.
The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) and the Fellows and Members of the Ghana Chapter of West African College of Surgeons said that was dangerous, especially in the light of the potential airborne spread of the virus from emerging scientific evidence.
“The face shields protect against splashes and might be added to a mask, however, it should not be used as a replacement for nose masks in protecting one against COVID-19,” a statement from the two bodies said.
It said the practice was a dangerous trend that must be discontinued immediate effect.
The statement was jointly signed by Dr Frank Ankobea, the President of the GMA, and Professor Peter Donkor, the first Vice-President and Country Representative, West African College of Surgeons, and copied to the Ghana News Agency.
The advice came on the heels of the alarming rate of wearing of face shields without nose masks as protection against COVID-I9.
“Continuous use of face shields without nose mask by the public will lead to increased cases of COVID-19 in the country. The public is advised to wear nose masks at all times.”
The statement said there had been unsubstantiated reports on some social media platforms about a decrease in blood oxygen concentration as well as a build-up of carbon dioxide when one used a nose mask.
“As Medical Doctors (especially Surgeons), we wear face masks all the time in the course of work and no such derangements have been observed,” it said.
“We entreat the public to disregard these social media reports. The No mask, No Entry policy should be rigorously enforced. A face shield is NOT a nose mask.”
The use of Face shields without nose mask should not be encouraged and must be stopped, the statement cautioned.