Availability of the FFP2 mask in Germany

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asked Nov 3, 2021 in 3D Segmentation by freeamfva (39,060 points)

Availability of the FFP2 mask in Germany

It borders on a miracle: A year ago, at the beginning of the pandemic, mouth-to-nose protection was still widely considered unnecessary, precisely because there were not enough masks in stock. As of this week, the mask “ecosystem” has now been replaced by the FFP2 mask requirement in public areas in Germany. Still, there is some space for improvement regarding their correct use by citizens. More critically of course is the scarcity issue. It is not always easy, even for experts and pharmacies to distinguish fake FFP2 masks from the certified ones. But even after these hurdles, can we entrust the selection of the right mask to the citizens with a clear conscience? To get more news about famous type I mask factory, you can visit tnkme.com official website.

Bavaria (Germany) has led the way and now the mask requirement is a nationwide policy. The FFP2 mask obligation in public transport as well as when shopping is in effect across all German states. From the federal government's point of view, this seems like a “bull’s eye” in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. But experts are already beginning to warn that this sort of ‘outsourcing’ of medical mouth-nose protection into the hands of the public does not necessarily mean greater safety. Do these experts have a point?
An uncovered nose, a mask left as “chin coverage” or the mask being left wrapped around the wrist: We have observed many wrong and discretionary styles of mask usage during this pandemic. It is hard to believe that everything will be different with the FFP2 mask.

As Germany’s Robert Koch Institute (RKI) announced as early as January 14, 2021, the FFP2 masks previously used only in the medical environment are not without risks. Correctly put on, they close the mouth and nose by producing something as close as possible to an "airtight" space, so that the respiratory flow can only take place through the optional three- to five-layer mesh of the mask. Elderly people and patients with impaired lung function could well experience breathing problems with such air flow.

In addition, breathing difficulties or contact dermatitis have been described even among healthcare personnel as a result of the masks’ tight fit. Properly fitted and worn, on the other hand, these masks provide a high level of protection against viruses. But any person that may feel discomfort by such an unnatural breathing sensation through the FFP2 may instinctively lead people to make discretionary movements to catch a bit of fresh air. It seems okay to just quickly lift the mask to ventilate for a second or briefly let the nose get out of this “airtight” space right? Unfortunately, this is not the case for ensuring an effective protection against infection.
What makes it even more difficult is that FFP2 masks are intended for single use and therefore actually have to be replaced every day. Since they are also more expensive compared to the beloved and washable textile masks that have become so popular, they definitely need to be used more carefully, and less frequently by the citizens that are not part of the medical or front line community.

Sure, it is good news that there are already instructions on the Internet about how FFP2 masks could be recycled. Simply buy seven masks, label each with a different day of the week and then hang them dry on the line in the evening for seven days of airing. If it's Monday again, just take the Monday mask off the line and go shopping again at the supermarket. Great, infection protection with the FFP2 mask can be so simple.

Anyone who thinks that this is a misleading or an irresponsible suggestion for reuse, is unfortunately mistaken. What alternative do pensioners have when it is hard for them to make ends meet with their low incomes, specially as they wait for weeks, or maybe even months, for their free initial package of FFP2 masks that has been offered in Germany to the elderly? Or what about families relying on unemployment programs, whose coverage for medical expenses amounts to about 20 euros a month? What about the children whose faces are actually much too small for the masks? These issues, little or simple as they are, should have been discussed and clarified last summer when the infection rates seemed under control in Germany.

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