Although the wearing of masks in public is not now mandated by law, the Jackson County Health Department urges and recommends that masks be worn in all public settings where social distancing – staying at least 6 feet away from others – difficult to maintain, such as grocery stores and pharmacies.

In addition to the recommended wearing of masks in public places, the Health Department reminds citizens to continue these measures designed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus:

• Frequently wash your hands with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.

• Avoid close contact with people.

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and then throw the tissue away and wash your hands.

• Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces.

The Health Department also indicates that cloth face coverings should meet the following requirements:

• Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face,

• Be secured with ties or ear loops.

• Multiple layers of fabric.

• Allow for breathing without restriction.

• Can be laundered and machine dried without damage to the shape of the mask.

Cloth face masks should not be placed on children younger than 2 years of age, on anyone who has trouble breathing or on anyone unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Surgical masks and N95 respirators are not recommended for the public because they are in short supply and needed by health-care workers and medical first responders.

– Submitted to The Examiner