Could masks help prevent the spread of monkeypox?

PHAC is recommending healthcare settings adopt precautions against airborne, droplet, and contact transmission until more information is available.

The federal government is also generally encouraging “good hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette,” including wearing a mask or covering coughs, along with limiting sexual partners and practising safer sex.

Other public health authorities have emphasized avoiding close physical contact without much reference to spraying droplets or inhaling aerosols.

The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention initially warned travellers to wear face masks to prevent the spread of monkeypox but later dropped the recommendation, noting it “caused confusion.”

Now, the agency only suggests masks for those in close contact with infected people.

‘For people out and about, or travelling, the individual risk of having any contact with somebody with monkeypox remains incredibly low,’ Hugh Adler of the Respiratory Infections Group at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine told Reuters.”

Read more on Is monkeypox airborne? via CMAJ.

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