At about the same time as the first loosening of the lockdown as part of the corona pandemic, all federal states in Germany introduced a mask requirement for public transport and shops at the end of April 2020, not least because of the “reassessment” by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI ) . In this article, the recommendation of the RKI is to be evaluated.
Compulsory masks for many millions of citizens in Germany can result in tens of millions of contaminations every day, which would be largely avoidable because the already frequent hand-face contacts of people become even more frequent due to the mask requirement, but hand washing on the go is only exceptional is possible. There is a risk that the – inevitably – improper use of the mask and the increased tendency to touch oneself in the face while wearing the mask actually increases the risk of pathogen spread and thus pathogen transmission – a risk that one does but wants to reduce precisely through the mask.
A mask requirement gives a false sense of security, and a false sense of security is always a security risk.
With numerous viral infections, the pathogen excretion begins at the end of the incubation period, i.e. before symptoms of the disease are noticed. This is e.g. B. also known from influenza, which is why one could have assumed this to be the case with COVID-19 at the beginning of the pandemic.
The evaluation of the publications cited by the RKI for its “re-evaluation” of masks in public space shows that there is no scientific basis with which the use of masks (of any kind) in public by almost the entire population of Germany (minus of children up to 6 years of age approx. 80 million people) can be justified, and current studies show the same.
On the contrary, a mask requirement for many millions of people in public spaces can even become a risk of infection because the required hand hygiene cannot be observed.
Indirect pathogen contacts via contaminated surfaces are not reduced by masks, on the contrary, they potentially occur more frequently than without masks.
In the transmission of respiratory viruses, close (<1 m) face-to-face contact plays the decisive role, which must also exist for at least a certain time (≥ 15 min) so that a risk of transmission can even materialize.
On the one hand, most contacts in public spaces are not face-to-face contacts. On the other hand, even if they take place, they usually last less than 15 minutes, so that an effective transmission of infectious droplets appears very unlikely in these situations.
Keeping your distance during conversations protects against direct pathogen contact and makes wearing masks superfluous.
More on this study from:
Journals Refuse to Publish Negative Mask Study
Perhaps most egregious of all, Danish researchers recently conducted a randomized trial in an effort to prove the usefulness of face masks against COVID-19 infection but ended up proving the opposite. They now are complaining they cannot find a publisher. Peer review journals are simply refusing to accept the paper. Why?
The controversy has been covered in a Twitter thread25 by Alex Berenson, a former New York Times reporter. The study,26 which is currently only available in German, concluded tens of millions of contaminations can occur each day as people use the masks inappropriately, touch their faces and neglect to wash their hands.
For this reason, universal mask wearing may actually do more harm than good. This is clearly important information that should be disseminated to the general public, yet medical journals are shunning the paper, probably because it doesn’t align with their narrative that supports universal mask recommendations.
Danish RCT study on masks rejected by 3 medical journals — Negative results didn’t fit their narrative [The Lancet, New England Journal of Medicine and JAMA refused to publish it]