Getting the Facts about Face Shields

Every day, news agencies are broadcasting the latest scientific discoveries and updates about COVID-19. For most folks hearing terms like physical distancing, disinfection and virus-laden aerosol droplets might sound overwhelming or scary; but take a deep breath and keep reading. Interestingly, the virus responsible for causing COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that infects your lungs and respiratory components like the mucous membranes of your eyes, nose and mouth (https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/21205-respiratory-system)

The purpose of face masks, coverings and shields is to reduce the spread of a person’s respiratory droplets to others which might be infected with virus causing COVID-19. When we perform activities like singing, shouting, talking, crying or yelling, our respiratory droplets are released into the air and depending upon certain environmental factors like room ventilation or density and proximity of people to us, these droplets can linger in the air or travel beyond a certain “safe” distance. Reports vary on the average distance these droplets can travel as well as how viable or potent the infected droplets are once released into the air. Unfortunately, the newness of the virus means our preventive strategies are dynamic and constantly being revised or replaced. Additionally, our scope of knowledge and access to credible, scientific research and evidence-based healthcare practice is limited yet ongoing. The great news is our scientific and healthcare experts are working collaboratively to enhance their understanding to better meet the challenges this new virus has presented.

Here are some facts about face shields according to the Centers for Disease Control and other news sources:

  • Face shields are not recommended as a substitute for face masks at this time.
  • If face shields are being worn, make sure they cover the sides of your face to your ears and the bottom of the shield goes below you chin.
  • Make sure there is some type of padding above the eyebrows.
  • Before putting on your mask, always wash your hands using soap and running water.
  • If running water is unavailable, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% rubbing alcohol for at least 20 seconds.
  • Do not re-use/re-wear disposable face shields; they are intended for a single, one-time use.
  • Do not place face shields on newborns or infants.
  • Periodically clean and disinfect reusable face shields when the plastic is visibly soiled or dirty.
  • Follow the manufacturers’ recommendations for cleaning and disinfecting reusable face shields.
  • Clean and/or disinfect your hands after removing your face shields.

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ESV Scripture:
Job 32:8 – But it is the spirit in man, the breath of the Almighty, that makes him understand.
 
Prayer: Abba Father, thank you for our breath of life which happens involuntarily as a gift of grace from you. Help us to live abundantly in you even as our world continuously moves away from your precepts and commands. We are saddened by the overwhelming disease, disability and death that have entered this world but we know you comfort the brokenhearted and bind up our wounds. Allow us to keep our focus on you while we comfort the afflicted, mourn the loss and feed those in need with your living Word and manna. Grant us understanding and wisdom as we wait for your presence in our thoughts, words, deeds and prayers. Bless and keep us in the name of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Amen.