February 12, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — The U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has formally endorsed the practice of “double-masking” to guard against COVID-19, a proposal popularized in recent weeks by pundits, news anchors, and controversial government adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci.
A “simulated breathing experiment” shows that surgical masks on their own block 42% of COVID-19 particles for the wearer, and cloth masks block about 44% of particles,” claims the report, published for the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. “Wearing a cloth mask over a surgical mask increased protection for the person wearing the masks, blocking 83% of small particles.”
The report says that two people both wearing a cloth mask over a surgical mask reduces exposure to particles carrying the novel coronavirus by more than 95%, a result also achieved by knotting a surgical mask tightly enough that it is flush with the wearer’s face.
“The data in this report underscore the finding that good fit can increase overall mask efficiency,” the report adds. “Multiple simple ways to improve fit have been demonstrated to be effective.”
Last month, LifeSiteNews covered a CNBC segment in which anchor Shepard Smith and colleague Contessa Brewer agree that, in Smith’s words, “it’s time to double up and wear two,” with Brewer going so far as to suggest wearing three at a time. The segment also quoted Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as agreeing that “if you have a physical covering with one layer, you put another layer on, it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective.”
Conservative journalist Jordan Schachtel panned the latest study as “nothing more than a handful of experiments on mannequins in a contained environment[.] … The CDC sprayed aerosols at mannequins and slapped a science™ label on their experiments.”
“A proper study on the efficacy of masks needs to be a randomized controlled trial involving human beings in their normal settings — such as the Danish mask study that showed there is no evidence that masks do anything to prevent COVID-19 — and not mannequins in a laboratory,” he continued.
Schachtel further noted the CDC’s own footnote, which acknowledges that “double masking might impede breathing or obstruct peripheral vision for some wearers, and knotting and tucking can change the shape of the mask such that it no longer covers fully both the nose and the mouth of persons with larger faces.”
In the early days of the coronavirus outbreak, the CDC and U.S. surgeon general Jerome Adams counseled against wearing masks, as did Fauci, who told CBS last year that “wearing a mask might make people feel a little bit better and it might even block a droplet, but it’s not providing the perfect protection that people think that it is. And, often, there are unintended consequences — people keep fiddling with the mask and they keep touching their face.” (The public later learned health officials actually wanted to discourage the general public from buying masks to conserve the supply for health workers.)
Despite the popular insistence that masking is essential outside one’s home, there remain reasons to doubt their effectiveness, such as the CDC’s September acknowledgment that masks cannot be counted on to keep out the coronavirus when spending 15 minutes or longer within six feet of someone, or a May 2020 study published by CDC’s peer-reviewed journal Emerging Infectious Diseases that “did not find evidence that surgical-type face masks are effective in reducing laboratory-confirmed influenza transmission, either when worn by infected persons (source control) or by persons in the general community to reduce their susceptibility.”