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Commentary: Just wear a mask

Masks are important during the coronavirus pandemic.

TAMPA, Fla. — The following is a commentary from 10 Tampa Bay Brightside Anchor Rob Finnerty. 

Should you wear a mask? 

Since the beginning of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the messaging from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, the White House Coronavirus Task Force, and medical professionals worldwide has been confusing and ambiguous. 

In March, the CDC told healthy Americans that they didn’t have to wear masks, only to reverse course and advise that everyone should wear a mask.

The World Health Organization sent out a now-infamous tweet on January 14 claiming, at the time, that “Chinese authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus.” 

In June, Maria Van Kerkhove, the World Health Organization’s technical lead, further confused the public at a press briefing by claiming that transmission of the coronavirus appears to be “very rare” with anyone who is asymptomatic.

The point that I am trying to make is that because the virus is novel or new, no one knows everything about how it spreads or its long-term effects. This confusion has also spilled over into whether or not the public should wear masks and face coverings indoors and whenever social distancing is not possible. 

It’s a debate playing out all over America as local governments struggle with what to do, and it’s happening while new cases of the virus continue to increase at a rapid rate. 

Should you wear a mask? That is not a decision that I can make for you, but here is why it might make a lot of sense, especially right now.

If you want to learn how to make your own mask at home, we have a how-to video here.

RELATED: How to properly wear face masks to prevent coronavirus spread

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