Gov. Wolf: All Pennsylvanians should now wear masks when leaving their homes | Coronavirus | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Gov. Wolf: All Pennsylvanians should now wear masks when leaving their homes

click to enlarge CP PHOTO: LISA CUNNINGHAM
CP photo: Lisa Cunningham
Everyone in Pennsylvania should now wear masks when leaving their homes, according to Gov. Tom Wolf.

Wolf made the announcement earlier today during his daily COVID-19 press briefing, two days after he instituted a stay-at-home order for the entire state until at least April 30.

“Masks help prevent people from sharing illnesses,” said Wolf during today's briefing. "But, they don’t do a great job at keeping people from getting sick; and, they’re not foolproof, so it is critical that our first act is to ask ourselves if we really need to leave our house. If we don’t really, truly need to leave, then we shouldn’t.”

The orders are meant to help stop the spread of coronavirus throughout the state. There are currently 1,404 confirmed positive cases of coronavirus in Pennsylvania, with 476 in Allegheny County. There have been 102 coronavirus-related deaths in the state. (For up-to-date figures, visit our ongoing tally of confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths in Allegheny County.)

Pennsylvania's Department of Health has provided information guides on homemade masks on its website, including Guidance on Homemade Masks During COVID-19 (which includes instructions on making your own mask), Understanding the Difference: Homemade Masks, and a COVID-19 Homemade Mask Factsheet.

Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine reminds people, however, that “staying home is the most effective way to protect yourself and others against COVID-19.”

“If you must go out because you are out of food or medication,” she adds, “then wearing a mask, or even a bandana across your nose and mouth could be an extra layer of protection.”

There are multiple Pittsburgh companies making handmade masks if someone is unable, including Operation Face Mask Pittsburgh, who is stitching washable, resusable masks for frontline and essential workers in need of protection.

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