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Are billions of people around the globe foolish for wearing facemasks to protect against the flu? A portion of the mainstream media seems to believe so. They report that wearing a protective facemask is ineffective because the virus particle is so small that it passes right through. This is false.
Facemasks do work to prevent the spread of the flu. The virus does not spread in the air as isolated viral particles. The virus is floating in microdroplets of human secretions. These water-based particles are stopped by proper facemasks. The CDC has issued these guidance documents on the matter.
The $1.5 Billion in emergency funding set aside by the Obama administration also allocates for facemask supplies.
The local New York City NBC news affiliate created this video footage of the New York City labs that are doing the actual testing of the swine flu (H1N1). Note that all of the staff is wearing protective facemasks.