There has been a rapid increase in Surgical Masks manufacturing throughout the world since coronavirus started in Wuhan, China.
As we discover new variants & with higher numbers of cases being diagnosed everyday in the UK, it is essential for people to find better ways to protect themselves and find safer surgical face masks.
Medica Masks Made in Britain
The british surgical mask industry is now in uproar as people are buying more and more and looking for better quality masks.
Local High Demand of PPE
With such huge UK demands, it is now more necessary than ever to make these masks and PPE from locally sourced materials; import fees will be a thing of the past and it will make the masks readily available to consumers.
Properties of Medical Face Masks
Surgical Masks are fluid resistant medical devices which do not provide a close fit with the face for the wearer.
They provide a considerable amount of protection from large respiratory droplets and are divided into three types.
Type I & IR can provide a bacterial filtering efficiency (BFE) up to 95% whilst Type II & IIR can filter up to 98%.
Type II - 3 ply face masks are not effective splash and fluid resistant as compared to type IIR 4 ply surgical masks.
Both Type II and IIR are compatible with European Union Standard (EN14683).
In Britain, both of these masks are available in a wide variety of colours and styles thus providing variations for people to choose from.
An Environmental Impact
According to an ecological study looking at a cotton mask and surgical mask, it was found that cotton masks have a bigger water footprint and ecological scarce whilst the carbon footprint of both masks were found to be similar.
These medical face masks are heat sensitive, so they cannot undergo sterilization and should be disposed of after use.
A study has found that the coronavirus can stay on surfaces for over nine days, thus the UK government has recommended people dispose of masks after 72 hours.
If they are not disposed of properly soon after use, they will become a source of reinfection.
High demand and consumption of masks has led to an increase in biomedical waste and environmental pollution.
These biodegradable masks end up in gutters, landfill, oceans and public refuse sites where they get degraded into small particles and contribute to microplastic fibre pollution.
Advantages of Buying a UK Made Surgical Face Mask
Buying surgical masks locally in the UK, has a lot of advantages, such as reduces the environmental impact, protect jobs, adds trust and helps british businesses.
Important Factors for a Mask
Here are some of the factors that should be kept in mind while purchasing surgical masks made in the UK:
- Higher Filtering efficiency - (BFE greater than 99% can filter more biological agents effectively).
- Splash resistant so that they prevent the virus being transmitted from nasal secretions and body fluids.
- Lightweight and with a soft inner lining - This will make them easier to wear comfortably.
- Highly breathable- the user should not have difficulty in breathing through it.
- Elastic Ear Loop - So that people of all age groups can adjust the loop and wear the mask with no hassle.
- Hypoallergenic - ( devoid of any Latex & Fiberglass particles).
- Rigorously tested, meet the European Union Standard EN:14683 and masks are certified.
- Disposable - so they can be discarded properly after use or after it becomes visibly dirty or damaged.
Although using surgical masks is current public priority, excessive mask use or mask use when it is not required can lead to them getting dumped in landfill areas and oceans.
This can ultimately damage our environment and marine life that we long to conserve.