The National Health Confederation (SNC) maintains updated information on the pandemic coronavirus (COVID-19) and until April 21, 2020, 43,078 people infected and 2,741 deaths from the virus were confirmed, creating a 6.4% fatality rate. which places Brazil as the second country in America with the most cases of death from coronavirus.

It is observed that since the first case appeared in Brazil, on February 26, 2020, various isolation and social distance measures have been taken and preventive actions have been taken to reduce the transmission of the virus in the population. And one of the most used and adopted actions in hospitals and companies is the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Greater emphasis has been given to the use of PPE by health professionals and workers who work in companies with activities that are critical to the proper functioning of the health sector (hygiene and cleaning), as well as to supply the population , such as the food industry, transportation, pharmaceuticals, service stations, among others.

In April, our team launched the campaign to use 8mm Ideastechnology for free in the control and delivery of PPE in hospitals and industries that continue to operate and have a high volume of delivery of personal protective equipment, such as protective masks. High efficiency facial (N95 or PFF2-rated respirator – Filtering semi-facial part), gloves, uniforms, shoes, among others. With technology, it is possible to reduce physical contact and avoid contamination between frontline professionals in the fight against coronavirus and those responsible for the distribution of PPE.

Pandemic Movement for the Americas

World Health Organization (who) stressed that Latin American countries have not yet experienced critical moments and that they should expand the use of preventive measures and expand the diagnostic capacity of the coronavirus. This statement arises from the fact that the epicenter is moving from Europe to the countries of the Americas, it is observed that in 87 days 54 countries already have registered cases, the United States standing out with 83% of cases, Brazil accumulating 4.5% and Mexico with a high underreporting of cases.

One of the main responses to stop the transmission of the virus and mitigate the impacts on the health of the region’s population is to continue with social isolation and distance. Also, encourage the use of homemade face masks for people who, for special reasons, need to travel to cities.

During the campaign carried out by the 8mm IdeasTeam for the Control and Delivery of PPE, it was identified that several doubts arise among the population regarding the use, manufacture and cleaning of homemade personal protection masks. Although the homemade mask cannot be considered a PPE with an Approved Certificate (CA), as compliance with regulatory requirements still needs to be assessed, several countries have been encouraging the use of homemade masks for the population with the Masks for All movement (Masks4all)

Our 8mm Ideasteam sought to meet at this Send Information that can guide the use, manufacture and hygiene of homemade masks based on the information provided by the Ministry of Health, the movement Masks4all, scientific publications and the Scientific Evidence Study Group COVID-19 of the Universidade Estadual de Maringá (EMU)

Use of homemade face masks

The indication of the use of homemade masks is for public or work places, such as factories, urban transport, mechanical workshops, supermarkets, pharmacies, bakeries, especially in areas of significant community transmission, avoiding transmission by asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic people.

In Brazil, the Ministry of Health (MS) launched the digital campaign for the use and manufacture of homemade masks, on April 2, 2020, as a vital element to prevent the spread of the virus. It highlights that after two hours it is necessary to change or when it presents excessive humidity or dirt. And, ideally, each person should have at least two cloth masks (non-woven fabric, known as TNT (3 layers) or cotton cloth (2 layers)).

Several experts cite the use of the mask as a mechanical barrier in the spread of the Coronavirus, whose purpose is to protect people and their families, but it is not a measure of self-protection. Also, health professionals do not recommend the use of cloth masks.

The research group of EMU Emphasize that “the inappropriate use of masks, such as not changing them, can threaten the protective effect and even increase the risk of infection. Therefore, measures are necessary, such as: hand hygiene before putting on masks; follow the correct placement guidelines; do not put your hand on the mask under any circumstances; and, dispose of or disinfect the masks properly. “

The use of the homemade mask is individual, cannot be shared with anyone and must be cleaned properly. The important thing is that the homemade mask is manufactured in the correct measurements, completely covering the mouth and nose and it fits well to the face, without leaving spaces on the sides.

How to use homemade masks for coronavirus protection

Remember to use the homemade mask whenever you need to leave home, regardless of the time, distance or reason for the trip. To avoid contamination or reduce exposure for an extended period, always leave with at least one reserve and carry a bag to store the dirty mask when you need to change. Always try to identify the mask to avoid contamination at the time of cleaning or disposal.

When exposed to contaminated people or environments, the mask must be discarded. To do this, when you get home, spray a bleach solution of water (2 tablespoons bleach per 1 liter of water) before throwing it away. This prevents other people from becoming contaminated by handling the discarded item, such as collectors, recyclers, cleaning professionals, or the homeless.

Making homemade masks

To produce homemade masks or cloth masks, it is recommended to use flat cloth, for example, cotton (composed of 55% polyester and 45% cotton), tricoline and cretonne, knitted fabrics, cotton fabrics (such as 100% cotton t-shirts) and / or non-woven fabrics known as TNT, using at least two or three layers.

The production process begins with the cutting of 20.0 x 37.5 cm rectangular pieces and passes the sewing machine (overlock) on the smaller sides of the piece. Then fold the fabric in half on the longest side (20.0 cm) and make the channels with 0.5 cm folds to sew and pass the elastic. In this model, it is still possible to use the open side as an option to put a filter on, for example, paper towels, further blocking virus particles.

Manufacture of homemade masks. Source: DDM / UEM (2020).

Other models of cloth mask manufacturing can still be consulted in the evidence report on the use of masks for the large population prepared by the Study Group on Scientific Evidence at COVID-19 of the Maringá State University (EMU)

Cleaning homemade masks

Cleaning homemade masks is extremely important to reduce the likelihood of infection by the user and to prevent the spread of the virus in our homes, workplaces, or public places. The main recommendations proposed by public health agencies and specialists for mask cleaning are:

  • Wash with soap and water, leaving in contact for at least 30 minutes;
  • if possible, use water at high temperatures, such as 70ºC;
  • Immerse in a hypochlorite solution (2.0 to 2.5%), with contact for at least 30 minutes. The dilution ratio to be used is one part chlorine to 50 parts water, for example, 10 ml of chlorine per 500 ml of drinking water;
    * But care must be taken to avoid tissue degradation and residual odors.
  • do not use fabric softeners;
  • dry naturally. The masks must always be dry for reuse;
  • iron with hot iron, at a temperature above 70ºC and pack them in a plastic bag.

In this moment of change and emergence of society, we remain active and ready. We have several tools that allow a much safer, closer and more agile contact, such as our application, website and emailIn addition to that our employees are also available for meetings by videoconference, email, telephone and WhatsApp.

We count on your support and a simple attitude to share!

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