A survey of 1,001 adult Latvian residents conducted at the beginning of October suggests the use of face masks in public places, even by people vaccinated against Covid-19, is not something most people object to.
Asked the question: Do you think that people vaccinated against Covid-19 should also wear face masks in public places in the future? responses were divided into four groups:
- 40% of the population said "Yes"
- 12% said "Only if they have symptoms"
- 21% said "If they don't feel safe"
- 19% said "No"
- 5% said "No, not even in indoor public places"
- 3% gave other/no responses
It should be stressed that the responses related to the specific question asked, and were not an opinion about whether masks were a good idea in general. It could also be argued that several of the response options overlap, making it difficult to give a very definite delineation of strength of feeling.
Face masks retain the largest drops of aerosol in the breath of an infected person, and studies show that reusable cotton, chiffon, silk masks reduce the chance of passing on infection by 50%, while the effectiveness of medical masks is even higher.
"Our observations show that the majority of the population is aware that protective masks are used to protect their own and others' health to limit the spread of viruses, not for formal compliance," commented Vadims Brižaņs, "Mēness aptieka" pharmacist and online consultation project manager.