Home>Articles>New CDC Study Finds Majority of Those Infected with COVID-19 ‘Always’ Wore Masks

Mandatory face mask rules in some Californian cities now come with a fine. (Photo: Youtube)

New CDC Study Finds Majority of Those Infected with COVID-19 ‘Always’ Wore Masks

California’s BYD mask deal inked with mask data in question

By Katy Grimes, October 13, 2020 10:41 am

Once again it appears there are conflicting facts, data and plenty of opinions about the efficacy of wearing masks to prevent contracting the Coronavirus.

In addition to causing “maskne” and skin infections on the face and around the mouth, persistent coughing, “mask mouth,” and respiratory illnesses including lung infections, it turns out that most everyone infected with COVID-19 “always” wore masks, according to a newly published study by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The study found 74.2% reported wearing masks “always” while 14.5% wore masks “often,” or 85% almost always woremasks.

It is difficult not to conclude that wearing non-surgical cloth face masks or face coverings does little to prevent contracting the coronavirus.

California Globe reported in April on Gov. Gavin Newsom’s unilateral decision which he announced on MSNBC, to spend $1 billion on surgical face masks, and said the contract had already been “inked.” Newsom made the $1 billion face mask deal with Chinese electric car manufacturer BYD for 150 million N95 masks and surgical masks each month, despite the conflicting science about using face masks for coronavirus prevention. The real reason for the contract is still unknown.

However, the CDC study, conducted by 11 medical institutions, also said, “CDC and other public health authorities recommend community mitigation strategies to reduce transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 (1,2).” And the CDC still recommends masks, saying “cloth face coverings help prevent people who have COVID-19 from spreading the virus to others,” according to a July statement.

From the CDC Study:

Participants were asked about wearing a mask and possible community exposure activities (e.g., gatherings with ≤10 or >10 persons in a home; shopping; dining at a restaurant; going to an office setting, salon, gym, bar/coffee shop, or church/religious gathering; or using public transportation) on a five-point Likert-type scale ranging from “never” to “more than once per day” or “always.”

For each reported activity, participants were asked to quantify degree of adherence to recommendations such as wearing a face mask of any kind or social distancing among other persons at that location, with response options ranging from “none” to “almost all.”

In the 14 days before illness onset, 71% of case-patients and 74% of controlparticipants reported always using cloth face coverings or other mask types when in public. Close contact with one or more persons with known COVID-19 was reported by 42% of casepatients compared with 14% of control-participants (p<0.01), and most (51%) close contacts were family members.

Interestingly, the CDC found:

Adults with confirmed COVID-19 (case-patients) were approximately twice as likely as were control-participants to have reported dining at a restaurant in the 14 days before becoming ill. In addition to dining at a restaurant, case-patients were more likely to report going to a bar/coffee shop, but only when the analysis was restricted to participants without close contact with persons with known COVID-19 before illness onset. Reports of exposures in restaurants have been linked to air circulation (7). Direction, ventilation, and intensity of airflow might affect virus transmission, even if social distancing measures and mask use are implemented according to current guidance. Masks cannot be effectively worn while eating and drinking, whereas shopping and numerous other indoor activities do not preclude mask use. (Of note, the question assessing dining at a restaurant did not distinguish between indoor and outdoor options. In addition, the question about going to a bar or coffee shop did not distinguish between the venues or service delivery methods, which might represent different exposures.)

3.9% of respondents said they never wore face masks; another 3.9% said they rarely did.

Of the case patients and control participants 61.2% reported at least one of the following underlying chronic medical conditions: cardiac condition, hypertension, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, immunodeficiency, psychiatric condition, diabetes, or obesity.

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183 thoughts on “New CDC Study Finds Majority of Those Infected with COVID-19 ‘Always’ Wore Masks

  1. This was never about science and it will never be about science. This is a political tool/weapon that Democrats are using to destroy people’s lives and influence the election.

        Surgeons/painters/construction workers all worn mask before Covid…
        Stop crying wear the mask.

        1. Its probably getting into the eyes dummy, masks are ineffective idiot, Look at the study. Damn stupid democrats.

        2. “…wear the mask properly.” Therein lies the rub, eh, Shaleka? The preponderant segment of the general public do NOT wear the mask properly and end up causing an even greater risk of spreading – not just Covid 19 – but all sorts of other infections. Every time a person breathes, talks, sprays, coughs, sneezes, etc. into his or her mask (face diaper), their bacteria, virus particles, infections collect in that “bag” and don’t just magically disappear or become inert. They survive and even thrive, especially when you consider that the wearer provides a nice, warm, moist environment for this strap-on petri dish to flourish. Everything the person touches – their steering wheel, toilet seat and flush handle, the contents of their wallet and/or purse, door handles, EVERYTHING – cross-contaminates their face mask every time they adjust it or fiddle with it or take it off and shove it in their pocket, then put it back on again. Then everything they touch becomes contaminated with that biology project growing in their mask. Think about that the next time you’re shopping at the grocery store and you pick up that package of ground beef, or when you’re at the restaurant and your server places your plate of ravioli in front of you. Bon appetit!

          1. The cross contamination points you made have been my thoughts for months. Everything everyone touches everywhere. What if someone has Covid-19 in the grocery store & it’s on their hands & they go around touching things but don’t but them. The next person buys it & gets Covid-19 & it goes on & on. And the masks are NOT all worn properly either. There’s gaps at the nose & sides. I see masks laying around on the ground in random places. They may have Covid on them. Masks could have Covid on them if someone has Covid, therefore if Covid is so harmful to the millions, then all masks should be put into “sanitary” containers to be disposed of properly. Not tossed around, tossed out, kept in pockets, tossed onto the ground. We’re living in a military state over a virus. There’s been plenty of viruses. There always will be. The death rate is low. It’s mainly the elderly or immunocompromised people that have an issue with it. Everyone in planet earth has their days numbered & we’re all eventually going to die. The “authorities” are fear mongering to cause submission from the masses so they can fulfill their agenda. And no I’m not talking about a “conspiracy theory” either. And, AS IF they REALLY give a crap about the “health & well-being” of millions of people when to them it’s really all about money, & to them people are expendable.

          2. The cross contamination points you made have been my thoughts for months. Everything everyone touches everywhere. What if someone has Covid-19 in the grocery store & it’s on their hands & they go around touching things but don’t buy them. The next person buys it & gets Covid-19 & it goes on & on. And the masks are NOT all worn properly either. There’s gaps at the nose & sides. I see masks laying around on the ground in random places. They may have Covid-19 on them. Masks could have Covid-19 on them if someone has Covid-19, therefore if Covid-19 is so harmful to the millions, then all masks should be put into “sanitary” containers to be disposed of properly. Not tossed around, tossed out, kept in pockets, tossed onto the ground. We’re living in a military state over a virus. There’s been plenty of viruses. There always will be. The death rate is low. It’s mainly the elderly or immunocompromised people that have an issue with it. Everyone on planet earth has an immune system to fight off illnesses, & also has their days numbered & we’re all eventually going to die. The “authorities” are fear mongering to cause submission from the masses so they can fulfill their agenda. And no I’m not talking about a “conspiracy theory” either. And, AS IF they REALLY give a crap about the “health & well-being” of millions of people when to them it’s really all about money, & to them people are expendable.

        3. Surgeons, painters and construction workers do not wear masks to protect them from viruses!! Nor would their masks protect them from viruses which are so tiny they go right through. Neither the wearer of a mask nor anyone around a mask wearer are protected. Oh, and by the way, just because you disagree with a study, does NOT make it untrue. Stop crying and face reality.

        4. Yeah… To block dust and bacteria. Never for a virus. That’s not what masks are for. Yelling doesn’t make you right.

        5. The Chinese have worn mandatory face masks for decades. They still got the virus. Social distancing, soap and water and hand sanitizer is really all that’s needed. Wearing a face mask for prolonged periods 7 days a weak can cause side effects. No professional wears a face mask for 8-12 hours while at work. Don’t be silly. They have them off and on all day long and only use them when needed, which isn’t even a combined total of 8 hrs. They have them off more than they have them on.

          1. While I mostly agree with you, those who work in surgery do, indeed, wear masks all day long. Without I’ll effects. Having said that, I do agree that masks are ineffective against viruses, and find it amusing that the CDC concludes the opposite of the data they collect. Personally? I think Democrats just want everyone to wear masks to decrease the amount of oxygen people get to their brains so that people will lower their IQ’s through oxygen deprivation to the brain. That way they can get more votes. I am just kidding, but I have heard less reasonable theories.

        6. LMAO!! You disagree on this study. But you agree with CDC when they said we should wear masks! Exactly what degrees do you hold that makes you more of an expert than the CDC. Do you honestly think that the masks everyone wears protects you from anything?? How many of your beloved politicians including Biden have been caught in public without a mask?? So far I’ve counted 23. Gov. Wolf and a Democratic lawmaker were just caught on a hot mic saying masks were political theater. Democrats truly are a special kind of stupid!

        7. The why does every mask package state “offers no protection against viruses and influenza”.

          EVERY MASK PACKAGE says this.

          Think for yourself and look

        8. proper fit is essential but that takes a trained expert to fit the mask to your face every time you put it on. That is not realistically possible. And once it is put on it starts to become moist and opens the gates for much contamination from bacteria. Finally the holes on any mask other than the fit tested for each wearing type are 1000’s time larger than the viral particles. Stop preaching and start reading.

        9. Now since narrative has all but completely fallen apparent and only the most loyal sheep still think masks work against Covid I believe it’s time to point out that your comment didn’t age very well lol.

      1. Ishmael, look at what Hitler did. If you think a political party wouldn’t kill large scale people for power, then you’re just blind. The democrats are so power hungry to win this election that 1 year ago was guaranteed to be a trump re-election. They have done everything they could possibly do. it seems awfully coincidental that this came on the election year, in a year they had virtually 0 chance to win.

      2. Ahh.. you don’t have to die FROM covid to be classed a COVID DEATH.. many health ministers in the US have clearly stated this. “We have been very liberal with classifying deaths. Even if you are a terminal cancer patient, even if you die from a clear other cause, but have tested positive for Covid, then it is classed a Covid death”. People die love, its inevitable.

      3. “JUST” to influence an election? Wow, way more than that going on. Total control. Government control over America. The Great Reset worldwide. Total world control among the highest leaders around the world all parroting the same great reset BS. At least 11 in line so far. So just to influence an election, no. To unseat Trump firstly, then the rest falls into line.

      4. Well if you look at all that has transpired since this was discovered, at this point it kind of looks that way. The final takeaway here is that if Trump had been declared the winner we would have had a very different and more acceptable outcome from this.

      1. Well the democrats still try to convince themselves and therefore everyone else that the masks work, but the real science demonstrates repeatedly that they do not. They also have tried to overhype every aspect of the pandemic to make people compliant, by using fear tactics. The likelihood of dying of covid is much lower than that of dying in a car crash – who is gonna stop driving though? They do not do research they listen to idiots who know the right words to use to convince the other idiots of something. The reality of this whole thing is that for many people their ability to reason and use logic and common sense, and to trust their own bodies and immune responses have gotten lost inside the symbolic mask. Its a shame it has taken over a year for the reality to finally start making its way into the public awareness. People are going to start getting angry because the democrats made everything seem worse than it was and forced shutdowns and closures resulting in one of the worst economic and personal disasters in US history.

    1. BEWARE that there are a lot of mask trolls ahead! They seem to come out of the woodwork whenever there is a mask article, but to me their pro-mask comments don’t have the ring of truth. Actually it could just be ONE person who is responsible for a lot of the finger-wagging.

      1. Masks are to make OTHER people FEEL better. They do nothing.

        Think about it. Breathing without a mask, you are pulling in air directly in front of your mouth, a small area. You can turn away and breathe from a different direction to choose another small sector of air. Breathing with a mask, you are pulling in air from all around your head…a much greater area, so a droplet with the virus floating around your head somewhere that you would not otherwise breathe in will be sucked in around the mask, and at a higher velocity due to the resistance suction that the mask creates. Not to mention that the virus can be caught on the inside of the mask, giving you follow-up chances to breathe it in.

        I have tried these masks for woodworking and I find myself coughing a lot more because the mask does not stop the dust. It ACCELERATES it and I probably end up breathing it further into my lungs than I normally would. In fact, with normal breathing at low velocity, a lot of the contaminants in the air are stopped by our mucous membranes in the nose and mouth (which is what they are meant to do). I imagine that there are all sorts of things in the air that are breathed into the lungs a lot deeper now. I would not be surprised to see a huge spike in lung cancers 2-3 years from now.

        1. What you said is exactly correct and logical as the suction is occurring at a wider scope anywhere above and including below the neck area.

          1. Some studies have shown penetration rates across paper and cloth masks ranging from 40% to 90%. Penetration, Pt, is equal to 1 – efficiency (expressed as a decimal equivalent). Thus, if Pt = 0.9, then the mask is 10% efficient at filtering out target particles of a mean aerodynamic diameter.

            N95s — which are respirators, not masks — are 95% effective at filtering particles with a diameter of 0.3 um (3/1000th of a centimeter). Water droplets (cough, sneeze) vary between 1-10 um for the most part. The SARS/CoV/2 virus is 150 nm or 0.15 um in diameter. This is too small for an N95 to filter out, but N95s do filter out a high % of droplets that are entrained with viral particles.

            Paper and cloth masks offer little protection for droplets 1-10 um in size.

            HEPA filters remove 99.97% of 0.3 um particles — hence these are 167x more protective than N95s.

            With increased filtration rate comes greater resistance (delta P) across the mask — and more difficulty breathing along with more potential for CO2 build-up inside of the mask.

            Ambient air contains 410 ppmv CO2 (0.04% by vol). Studies have shown CO2 concentrations inside a mask approaching 2% by vol (20,000 ppmv). This effectively reduces O2 from 20.9% by vol to below 19%.

            OSHA and NIOSH and EPA consider O2 < 19.5% to be IDLH conditions.

            Also, masks — including N95 respirators — are notoriously leaky as the vast majority of people are not trained to properly don them.

            Moreover, constant touching of the mask and infrequent changeout leads to cross-contamination and a vehicle for viral transmission.

            All of this must go into consideration.

            Many EHS professionals object to wearing masks for these reasons.

        2. Well Said, also there is a new study out that shows that the surgical and masks and cloth masks have many loose microscopic fibers that people are breathing in due to the increase inhalation and those fibers will get in the lungs and cause serious diseases.

          1. I would love to have a link to that study about microscopic fibers. Tired of the mask shaming and people saying to stop complaining about wearing a mask!

      2. Serious Question. Would it not make sense for people with underlying conditions or excessive fear to wear full blown respirators and everyone else have the freedom to make their own choice?

    2. The data actually show that masks are protective, if you understand how controlled experiments work.

      In the study, 74% of the control population “Always” wore a mask, but only 70% of the people who got COVID were from that group, which is a 5% reduction. Conversely, 3.1 % percent of the control population “Never” wore a mask, but the “Never” maskers make up 3.9% of the cases, which is a 25% increase. When taken together, there is a 30% reduction in risk for COVID cases for individuals who “Always” wear a mask versus those who “Never” wear a mask.

      The claims made in this article show a true lack of understanding of how science works. Using the same faulty logic, one could claim that being a Christian makes you more likely to be a criminal because 65% of prison inmates in the US are Christians, which is no more true than the ridiculous claims made in this article.

        1. With all due respect, I think that it is evident that I am not trying to dispute the claims of the study. It is your interpretation of the data that is at question. It is clear that your article is meant to perpetuate the erroneous myth that masks are bad, which is ideological and not supported by data.

          You stated “It is difficult not to conclude that wearing non-surgical cloth face masks or face coverings does little to prevent contracting the coronavirus.” On what basis do you make this claim? This was not a conclusion of the authors, and if anything their data show the opposite.

          The fact that a majority of the people were wearing masks in the first place is the only reason that the majority of COVID cases were people who wore masks. It is why there has to be a control group in the study for comparison. By omitting this simple fact from your article, whether intentionally or not, you are playing with people’s lives.

          We have the freedom as American to do what we want, so we have a choice to not wear a mask. Just as we have the freedom to burn flags and perpetuate myths that are killing Americans, but because we can do it, does not mean that we should do it.

          As an American, I feel it is my patriotic duty to protect America and my fellow Americans. If this means I have to suffer through wearing a mask, but it helps other Americans and the American economy, I think it is a pretty trivial sacrifice. I just wish more people cared about America as much as I do.

          1. I would have no problem with wearing a mask to protect myself or others if it was proven to stop viruses but we know that is not the case, viruse are way to small and will go straight through it. But I do agree if someone is sick with symptoms like coughing and sneezing wearing a mask is a good thing but not healthy people are so called asymptomatic people because it has never been proven that asymptomatic people spread the virus it is only assumed to be. Also before you mandate something for everyone you better also have studies showing that its safe like for instance what will the long term effect be for kids wearing masks for 8 hours a day, there has already been reports of kids passing out. Here is a study that people should read because it shows the potential risks of long term masks wearing. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/344360577_Masks_false_safety_and_real_dangers_Part_1_Friable_mask_particulate_and_lung_vulnerability
            Its not about suffering through wearing a mask, its about if they mandate that without any resistance then they will mandate the vaccine just the same. If they really wanted to help people out why haven’t they mentioned the recent study showing that people with high vitamin d levels don’t die or have severe symptoms. 45% of Americans are vitamin d deficient and of that number 80% of black americans and 70% of Hispanic americans are vitamin d deficient so if they really wanted to help people why aren’t they telling americans to wear your masks and take 2000-4000 IU per day of vitamin D to reach the needed levels. Why is it when you look on the WHO site and read the bullet points about wearing masks none of the five bullets points say anything about the masks protects you against virues instead there are things like it masks makes people feel accepted and makes people feel like their doing something to help and a crazy irrelevant point about people can earn an income by making and selling masks. People need to go back and read about how things first started and all the new research that shows are viruses are all around us in the air and water, trillions and trillions and there are more viruses in our bodies than cells so how would a mask stop viruses it would be like you putting up a fence around your house to protect against mosquitoes.

          2. You are really something. I wear them in stores and when in crowded spaces. Not because I think it makes that big of a difference, but because I don’t want to deal with people like you who are obsessed with masks. Distancing matters much more—along with not eating KFC every day, getting 7-8 hours of sleep, exercising regularly, etc. Why don’t you wear a helmet while driving a car? Why don’t you wear oven mitts when making toast? Everyone has a threshold on risk. The studies that are pro-mask admit that it only reduces infectious rates by around 6%. The fact that people outside, 30 feet from one another in San Francisco, are still freaked out by someone not wearing a mask is PURELY political. And I am a democrat. But with Covid you have to look at the facts. You can’t just look at CNN or MSNBC because they are fudging the facts every day. Here is one study the NYT, Guardian UK, etc keeps citing:
            “in community settings concluded that wearing a face mask slightly reduces the odds of infection by the wearer by around 6%”

            “In a pooled meta-analysis, the authors conclude that there was no significant reduction in influenza transmission with the use of face masks”

          3. There are more and more studies surfacing about masks not now and not ever being effective against a virus, and had they been, the case numbers and surges experienced by the U.S. would not have occurred if they worked. And you dont even need a study to realize that. States that had none or lifted mask mandates had no worse outcomes and numbers than states that were the most strictly locked down. Get over your education and just take a look around you. Read the data, no need to interpret anything. Also look at the disclaimer on the mask packaging and at the masks themselves currently acceptable for use to slow the spread… they are of large enough weave for a pin to slip through, and none of them fit right, not to mention touching, fiddling, laying them down everywhere and disregarding the need to wash or discard them after use. This is because the virus isn’t so deadly that we really NEED a mask, because they don’t work, and because our own body is designed to combat intruders like this, and most of us do this quite well, naturally. For those who don’t, they can decide what to do for themselves to “stay safe”.

        2. Damn right and thank so very much for both this superlative article and more so for all the great work. I’m once again, again proud of you for intelligely and morally conveying unbiased opinions,

        1. The data actually says that 85% SAY they always wore a mask, or almost always did.

          Also, way to pick out the data you want to use. Let’s look at some other facts from that article:

          “Adults with confirmed COVID-19 (case-patients) were
          approximately twice as likely as were control-participants to have
          reported dining at a restaurant in the 14 days before becoming

          ” If a family member
          or other close contact is ill, additional prevention measures
          can be taken to reduce transmission, such as cleaning and
          disinfecting the home, reducing shared meals and items, wearing gloves, and wearing masks, for those with and without known COVID-19.”

          Also: please read the part on pages 1260-1261 that are all about (emphasis mine): THE FINDINGS IN THIS REPORT ARE LIMITED BY AT LEAST FIVE LIMITATIONS” They then list these limitations!

          The final figure is also interesting as it takes the data and shows which activities are most ‘risky’. Guess what: it’s indoor places where people gather without masks (bars, gyms, restaurants) and religious gatherings.

          If you want to cherry pick data, how about cherry pick the data that says we shouldn’t be reopening the economy without restrictions like republicans want to do.

          1. Restrictions don’t work, nor do masks or lockdowns. and if you look you will find a numerous amount of evidence to support this. Also look around where you live and note what people are doing and also if there are still cases or not so much. We have been doing this stupid shepherding game for over a year and only now because the virus has been in circulation long enough to have fewer hosts to infect. This will occur regardless of restrictions or none. So hundreds of thousands of tragedies (that were not covid) are the results of what people who are NOT Republicans said needed to be done.

        2. You’re referencing the control column. That alone says that you’re talking about something you don’t understand much about. With all due respect.

          That 74% + 14% (which btw do not add to 85%) are not even the covid cases in the study and they are the numbers used as the article’s main argument. So, basically using part of one table and using it wrong.

          What the table is really saying is:
          74% always wore masks and they didn’t get the virus. While 70% always wore masks and got the virus.

          Yes, the rest of the article shows that some exposure rates are significantly higher (< 0.01) for the CASE-PATIENTS, as you said. That alone points to different reasons for getting the virus. But the most important number here is actually that 0.86 (to the right) which tells you the difference across groups of + and – cases is INSIGNIFICANT.

          The article IS misleading.

        3. The p-value of 0.86 makes the results statistically insignificant. p-values need to be 0.05 or LOWER to indicate statistical significance.

          The study is too small and the variables are inconclusive, according to the p-value .

          1. Jon is correct in his understanding of p values. For 95% confidence interval, p = 0.05. Values of p above this indicate poor data correlation; lower values of p reveal greater confidence in the data.

        4. This is the crux of the story: “Adults with confirmed COVID-19 (case-patients) were approximately twice as likely as were control-participants to have reported dining at a restaurant in the 14 days before becoming ill. In addition to dining at a restaurant, case-patients were more likely to report going to a bar/coffee shop…”

          When one is dining at a restaurant or sipping at a coffee shop masks are taken off. That is how transmission happens. It is not the wearing of masks that expose people to the virus, it is the removing of masks in public places.

          1. Taking the mask off in a public crowded environ like restaurant, and this data that “shows ” some correlation to the higher percentage of covid may or may not be attributable to this or other factors as well …. this is not in any way shape or form a scientific assessment isnt it a t least a bit disturbing what gets past off as almighty science or data …. most of this require the slow and steady drinking of “kool-aid” to assure the proper level of inebriation

      1. Your stats are flawed. if you went from 0.1% to 0.2% increase that would be a 100% increase. of course that could be an increase from 1 person to 2 if the population was 1,000. The baseline of the quantity of people in the percentage is what matters, not the percentage increase or decrease by themselves. Always love how people misuse stats.

        1. Using ratios is the standard methodology for risk assessment because the goal is to understand how each group is affected by the study variable. Going form 0.1 % to 0.2 % of the people in the study means that within that group there really was a 100 % increase in that outcome. If you extrapolate those numbers to the US population, it would mean 300,000 versus 600,000 people, which is a 100% increase.

          In the CDC data, the “Never” maskers had a 1.25 odds ratio risk for having COVID. The “Always” maskers had a 0.95 odds ratio risk for being a COVID case. This is a 30 % difference in risk for COVID. There were only 11 people in the study who never wore a mask, so the data are not statistically significant, but they are consistent with multiple previous studies that have show similar levels of protection for those wearing masks.

          What is not captured in this study is the role masks play in protecting others. When you exhale virus particle are suspended in vapor droplets that collide with and are deposited on the mask. It is why your mask gets damp. Obviously not all of them are captured, but there is an overall reduction that make it out to infect other people, which reduces the chance of infectious individuals from passing on the virus. The small number of individuals who did not wear masks were protected by the 75% of the population that “Always” wore a mask.

          1. I’m not sick. As such, there is a zero percent chance that I will make you sick, whether I wear a mask or not. And if you are so confident in the effectiveness of masks, than yours will protect you.

      2. You don’t need a “scientific” study. You only need a very simple experiment. Just put on one of these masks and do some fine wood-sanding. See for yourself how well your mask works, keeping in mind that even fine sawdust particulates are a lot larger in size than viruses or the droplets that contain them.

        1. The point is that if you have a mask on and COVID, you don’t spread it as easily. The mask isn’t to help you not catch it. The mask is to help you not spread it.

      3. The + case group had a 191% increase in close contact with another + Cv case compared to the control. Familial transmission — in the home where masks are unlikely to be worn — was 134% higher than in the control group. Despite the control group showing a 4.4% increase in combined often/always mask wearing, it encountered a 59% higher transmission of the virus in non-family encounters, I.e., when masks are usually worn for protectiveness. Increased mask wearing didn’t correlate to a decrease in transmission outside of the home.

    3. Agree 100% They would rather see our people die, our history erased, and our cities burned than to see Trump in office another 4 years.

    4. Love seeing this lively and knowledgeable debate on this site. It pleases me to no end to see a level of scientific and statistical literacy in such a broad set of contributors. I have often noted, in all of the media output, a tendency to try and oversimplify the issues associated with this pandemic, and the chaos of epidemiology where it collides with social behavior.
      Designing definitive experimental design protocols is extremely challenging, with so many varying genetic, cultural and social behaviors. In fear of being redundant, or captain obvious, a lot of what we need to know will only be realized looking backwards. The masking issue has been muddied by politics, inconsistent policy and product types.
      Mandates to wear masks often results in unanticipated changes in people’s behavior as it affects their ‘risk tolerance’ giving them a false sense of security. I believe encouraging HEPA filters in restaurants and bars would be more effective than capacity adjustments and mask wearing policies, that are often applied inconsistently.

    5. I believe the same thing myself. Its a small step of control im the peopleother slightly stronger measures are surely to follow.

  2. Agreed CW.
    The masks were a false sense of security substituting for sound science and common sense.
    Interesting tidbit where it reveals 61% of the infected have a chronic health condition. Should the at risk immunodeficient person be dining out during the Wuhan Virus pandemic? If I had a life threatening illness, I would not risk exposure!
    Also interesting that the healthy are asked not to participate in non essential work, travel or worship but the some of the at risk groups in our communities feel safe enough to dine out, hmm????

    We need to reopen California before the collateral damage worsens.

    1. Please note that masks were never about trying to keep YOURSELF from getting sick. It was to prevent OTHERS from getting sick. Because nitwits kept going out in public unmasked, they were infecting others, even those wearing masks. That’s why we’re in this mess.

      1. Somewhere between 50-60% of the US population has a chronic health condition. 61% of infected patients seems like a pretty normal statistic with that underlying statistic in mind. Chronic condition does not mean life threatening condition.

        I agree that California needs to reopen more than it is, but pushing the argument that COVID isn’t a dangerous threat is just ignorance. Correlation does not equal causation

      2. I cant believe its october 2020 and people still dont get this and report on rubbish cdc surveys that are irrelevant. I doubt people “
        who reported that they “always” wore masks actually did…and on top of that cloth masks do lil to nothing to filter or protext..everyone should at least wear surgical masks…and people still dont get wearing masks are to keep the virus from potential spreaders and not protect u from an possibly airborne virus.

        1. No they don’t. Wearing a mask and touching your face put maskers at more risk. People have been fooled to believe covid spreads mainly by air. It doesn’t. It’s VERY RARE. Touching things is still the main was we spread viruses.

      3. How do you figure that? California has had mask rules since June. The infectious rate in California has been under 1 since June. The flu infectious rate each winter is around 1.3 Check the facts: rt.live

      1. Could you please post the link to the actual scientific journal you describe in this article? You fail to include which US population this data came from. Drawing such drastic conclusions on a sample size of 154 case patients is inflammatory and title of this article does not reflect the true conclusions from the study.
        Please describe scientific work without bias or agenda.

          1. It is 11 outpatient healthcare facilities not 11 universities. I would love to see research data that shows what you claim this does, but this is not it. You need to reread this research or have someone help you u understand control group vs study group. The percent of mask wearers matches between the 2 groups because that is not the variable they are trying to isolate. 50% of the positive group were in close contact with family who was Covid positive (a time you would not have a mask on) and they are at restaurants more than the control group ( another time you would take your mask off). Once again, I would like to see a true study that supports your claim in this article but this doesn’t do that, you are misinterpreting the data.

    2. The Democrats are keeping everything locked down in CA so that they can take credit for all of the “job creation” and “economic growth” that happens after the election.

    3. This data only suggests that people get this thing from people who DON’T wear masks. “My mask protects You. Your mask protects Me.” I ALWAYS wear a mask. If I get this thing, it will be because of all the hateful, ignorant, selfish no-maskers and half-maskers around me.

      1. Sorry, but this is the height of stupidity and/or brainwashing. Masks that do protect YOU are widely available now, kn95, etc. And even with that, it’s the whole world’s responsibility to protect you, why because a billboard told you so? Personal responsibility!!

      2. How does that make any sense? Do you wear a seatbelt to protect others? Im suppose to wear something that is a violation of my rights & freedom because it protects others but not myself? When there is absolutely no proof that my mask does any good for you or me!? And when theres actual proof, that I have known about because I do my own research, that proves that masks are unhealthy & can actually make you more sick? There hasnt been one study, not one, showing where masks do any good. By breathing in bad bacteria all day or contaminated particles all day because theyre stuck on your mask can make you very sick.
        If you are worried about me making you sick when I have no symptoms, no reason to believe I’m contagious or a carrier, then you have the option to stay home. Or go out & wear a mask, gloves, hazmat suit, whatever makes you feel safe I dont care. But others shouldn’t have to stop living or change their daily routine because you dont feel safe. If a virus with a 99.9% survival rate scares you that bad, then I dont think a virus is what you should be worried about. Youre more likely to die in a car accident than you are from COVID. Based on this study, how can you still think masks, no matter who I am wearing mine for & no matter who youre wearing yours for….actually work? They dont protect anyone. So when they did this study they should ask everyone that tested positive, if every single person they have come in contact with in the last 2 weeks wore a mask & if they said no then whoever didnt must have been the one who gave them the virus? Because wearing a mask does nothing for yourself, it only protects others? So if you get sick its not your fault, its whoever was around you that didnt wear a mask? So no need to wash your hands, practice good hygiene, use common sense, none of that matters if I’m not wearing a mask? If this somehow makes sense to you, you should probably just stay home and order online, hide under your bed in your hazmat suit and wait for the vaccine. Or do I need to get the vaccine just so you can be protected?

      3. How long will we wear masks? Not forever. The virus is not going away, like flu and cold viruses. We will have vaccines and everyone will probably get it at some time. I had it in July. I am 56 and it was just a few days of feeling crappy. My son, daughter-in-law and infant grandson also had it with me. None of us were very sick, thank God. Baby had a runny nose for a day. I know people have died, but this cannot continue to run the country. Be smart, but live life. Masks cannot stop this thing, only slow it down a bit.

      4. Buy a mask that protects you and mind your god damn business. Your health is your responsibility and mine is mine. I don’t rely on others to keep me healthy. We aren’t doing that collective health care BS. If your afraid than wear a mask that works and mind your business or we will remind you how to do so. Touching your stupid face 1000 times a day puts u at more risk. End of story.

  3. Articles like this just accentuate how dangerous it is for people like the author to publish work under the guise of “journalism” in order to push a particular narrative, despite the author lacking the education and background to be able to interpret studies such as these with any nuance. Compare this article (as well as the credentials of the writer) to the work from publications like Ars Technica (whose applicable staff have, at minimum, a baccalaureate education in biology): the differences are more than evident.

    It is well established that self-reported data can be inconsistent and unreliable; for the author to conclude based on this single metric that “it is difficult not to conclude that … face coverings [do] little to prevent contracting the coronavirus” is not just irresponsible; it shows that she has no business interpreting this research at all. I’d argue that the author was being intellectually dishonest, but it’s clear she lacks the credentials or qualifications to comprehend her own errors of judgment.

    A better, but still imperfect, method for determining the efficacy of masks is to look at case trends, percent positive rates, and death rates in areas where mask mandates have been enforced. Unsurprisingly, countries such as those in east and southeast Asia, where mask-wearing is culturally normative, have had a much easier time containing the spread of the virus. Of course, reviewing the news, it seems like rather than refer to Asian countries for guidance, Americans would rather just beat, stab, and throw acid on Asians living inside our borders, as if attacking people who look vaguely Chinese will make this all go away.

    Woefully, the author’s work here will be well-received by an audience whose biology and statistics education stopped short of high school. I’ll also be quite surprised if this comment ever sees the light of day.

    1. You do know all masks used to say right on the box that they do not stop bacteria, fungus or viruses? Pre covid medical studies published in medical journals also said the same thing. Facts are facts.

      1. And that would have nothing to do from preventing a lawsuit in case you catch the virus and use the mask. Condom packages may say the condoms don’t prevent pregnancy or VD but that doesn’t stop people from using them.

  4. Thanks for the info, good article. I also noticed – the report also said: ” To help slow the spread of SARS-CoV-2, precautions should be implemented to stay home once exposed to someone with COVID-19, in addition to adhering to recommendations to wash hands often, wear masks, and social distance.”

  5. “Life is Most Important in Life is The Most Important Truth in Life” and “The Most Important Truth in Life” is the cure and prevention of all needless and preventable suffering and death.

    If a person is claiming to represent a life cause such as working in health care, politics, teaching, reporting, activism, etc., ask them if they agree, “Life is Most Important in Life is The Most Important Truth in Life”, is always true and why. If they cannot or refuse to answer the question public with their own name in full witness of their peers then they don’t care enough about life to properly represent its interests. Sure, some will attempt to life, but they will have to hold to it or risk getting called out and all these that don’t witness this truth as true to their peers are always people that don’t honestly care about life and so they are out. Free, and easy. You too are now forced to choose. Will you withhold the cure or share it with your peers? Choose well and Godspeed.

  6. My wife is a surgical nurse – as such she wears a mask – often for 90-95% of her 8-10-or-12 hour shift. In thirty years I have never herd her complain. The simple truth is Covid kills. My daughter, in medical school was recently in close contact with someone who tested positive for Covid – he should have been wearing a mask, but through hospital error wasn’t. My daughter was wearing a mask, and did not become infected, in her considered professional opinion she believes her mask saved her. We are besotted with whiners – it has to be orchestrated – in any event masks and distancing are our sole defense against a deadly foe, and we would do well to avail ourselves of every benefit possible.

    1. Surgical use of masks has never been for the prevention of viral transmission. Your daughter if in medical school, should know this. And while she may not complain she is of a unique non-responding human type if she wears a mask all day and feels no discomfort. Wearing anything over one’s major orifices all day is not normal and not meant to be un-felt. And many people who “tested positive for covid” did not have or had something (flu) that provided a positive result. Also your daughter may have a strong immune system and she did not succumb to this virus, because that is a how a healthy body behaves, or she may have had a mild or non-symptomatic case and never knew it. Not wanting to wear a mask when one is not sick, and taking personal responsibility, and expecting the same from others is not whining. It is normal behavior, how it is meant to be. Doing everything in order to keep other people safe is putting a lot of pressure, undue, on any human being. Why do we wear a seat belt – to protect ourselves, or rather, to help protect ourselves; they do not always help, but they are for the wearer, no one else. But seatbelt or not, you are significantly more likely to die in a car accident than you are of covid and yet people get in the car every day without a thought (especially not a thought about other people they might kill). So get off the high and mighty finger wagging podium and take care of your own business while I take care of mine.

  7. This was painful to read – please leave the interpretation of statistics to statisticians. There are so many things wrong with this conclusion, I’ll just expound on some of the basics:
    1. If you want to make a conclusion like the author does, you cannot compare the 71% (people who wore masks) to the 4% (people who didn’t wear masks). You should really be comparing the percentage of people who wore masks and got infected over all people who wore masks, and the percentage of people who did not wear masks and got infected over all those who did not wear masks.
    2. Since there are mask ordinances all over the country when it comes to going to grocery stores or running errands, it is highly likely that a majority of people fall into the “mask-wearing” category, skewing any sample of the population in the “mask-wearing” category as well. So, suppose a random sample of people got infected. it is inevitable that the large proportion will be mask-wearers. If the population that we draw from are those who go out more frequently, it is even more likely that the sample will be skewed toward mask-wearers.
    3. The test sample is restricted to people who were symptomatic, not those who were infected. It is highly likely that there are many people who were infected, and perhaps even positive cases that we do not use as test cases in this study. If we do, perhaps the results might be markedly different.

    All in all, just listen to the experts and wear a mask. And if you want some reason to justify your lack of willingness to wear a mask, please do not masquerade behind a wall of statistics to justify it. I know you probably don’t intend to mislead but the effect is misleading anyway.

    1. Mr. Chia
      I will tell you something that isn’t misleading. It is a scientific FACT that if you can BREATHE through it, YOU can get the virus through it! That my good Mr. Chia is not misleading and is a FACT. SO, you drink the orange drink and wear the mask and I won’t have to.

  8. It’s on the CDC website, masks don’t work for viruses, that is not their purpose.
    Nonpharmaceutical Measures for Pandemic Influenza in Nonhealthcare Settings—Personal Protective and Environmental Measures
    Disposable medical masks (also known as surgical masks) are loose-fitting devices that were designed to be worn by medical personnel to protect accidental contamination of patient wounds, and to protect the wearer against splashes or sprays of bodily fluids (36).

    There is limited evidence for their effectiveness in preventing influenza virus transmission either when worn by the infected person for source control or when worn by uninfected persons to reduce exposure.

    Our systematic review found no significant effect of face masks on transmission of laboratory-confirmed influenza.

  9. Shared the article and instantly blocked on Facebook as False Information. Wake the hell up people and start asking WHY did FB block mask usage information from the CDC.

    1. I know, it makes NO SENSE that Facebook would block mask information that comes from the CDC and label it “False Information.” Obviously this kind of a move is politically motivated. The now-Marxist Dems must really be shaking in their boots about the upcoming election. You’d think they wouldn’t want to be so blatant about it —- it might be the last straw for some and turn more people than ever away from the Democratic Party. #WalkAway

  10. This story is about a study about how wearing masks appear not matter in catching COVID. This study, by the CDC, used a survey that you can clearly see in the article that it was done in July.
    Yet, journalist Katy Grimes had to ask why Gov. Newsom bought $1 billion of surgical face, if face masks don’t work: “The real reason for the contract is still unknown.”
    Gov. Newsom bought the masks in March and he knew why he bought it, and the CDC article came out in July!
    This is being deceptive!

  11. Read the “What is added by this report?” section at https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6936a5.htm . It says the study “found that close contact with persons with known COVID-19 or going to locations that offer on-site eating and drinking options were associated with COVID-19 positivity.” Look at the table and you’ll see that of those who were infected, 70.6% and 14.4% (for a total of 85%) reported wearing a mask often or always. All that means is that wearing a mask does not protect you from unsafe activities such as eating or drinking in establishments without a mask!

  12. Taking the mask off to eat in a public setting had a lot to do with contraction of coronavirus, the study found. This article missed this extremely important piece of information.

    1. This article just wants to focus on the general and only the general (because, dare I say, for propaganda purposes?): wearing masks won’t keep you safe from COVID!
      Neglecting to mention relevant pieces of information on what situations where wearing masks (or wearing a mask is impossible, like eating at restaurants) is just deceptive!

  13. This virus thrives on ignorant and selfish behavior – this article panders to the ignorant – it implies that you are more likely to catch Covid19 if you wear a mask – what utter nonsense – if that was true then why do health workers always wear masks when they are in theatre and treating Covid +ve patients??? Get the facts right and don’t publish “fake news”.

  14. Why does a state of total population of 39.5 million, need 150 million masks per month? By now, most people are wearing reusable cloth masks, which do nothing to prevent covid, but whatever. The other fact being overlooked is that aside from the elderly (over 70) and those already sickly, this disease has a recovery rate of over 99.984% . Certainly nothing to be afraid of outside of the vulnerable population. Toughen up, people.

  15. https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-cdc-study-exposure/fact-check-misrepresented-cdc-study-about-community-exposure-to-the-new-coronavirus-idUSKBN2741WF

    The data showed there was no “significant difference” when comparing indoor activities that “do not preclude mask use”, for example: both 88.6% and 88.1% of case patients and control participants respectively went shopping, 24% and 29.6% respectively went to an office.

    But when looking at activities in which people could not wear masks effectively, such as eating and drinking at a public location, results showed a wider difference: 40.9% of the people who tested positive reportedly went to a restaurant, while 27.7% of the control participants went. People with the novel coronavirus who went to a dining place, bar or coffee shop were also “less likely to report observing all [other] patrons” at the establishment “adhering to recommendations such as wearing masks or social distancing.”

    The study also found that close contact, defined as within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes, with a person carrying the virus plays a substantial role in the spread the disease: 14% who tested negative reportedly had a close contact, 42% of those who tested positive did.

    1. Hey Steve, You can demand that I wear a mask all you want. It’s never going to happen. You’re not going to impose your will on me. You are on a mega power trip.

  16. Masks do not work. People only support wearing them because they’re ignorant of how they work in conjunction with viruses or because they feel empowered by preaching to other people. Groupthink works on people and that’s a fact. We have a serious issue with the virus and unfortunately, masks are giving everyone a false feeling of safety. They’re doing more harm than good since they don’t work but make everyone believe they don’t have to take any other precautions. If we could be honest about the ineffectiveness of masks, we could actually spend our time talking about a real solution.

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