What is novel coronavirus (COVID-19)?

  • Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses.
  • Some coronaviruses cause respiratory illness in people, ranging from common colds to severe pneumonias.
  • Rarely, animal coronaviruses can infect people, and more rarely, these can spread from person to person through close contact.
  • COVID-19 is a new strains of the virus that had not been previously identified in humans.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Symptoms for COVID-19 are similar to those for influenza or other respiratory illnesses. The most common symptoms include fever and cough but other symptoms may include:

  • sore throat
o runny nose
o nasal congestion
o shortness of breath o difficulty breathing
  • Most people (about 80%) recover from this disease without needing special treatment. However, it can cause serious illness. Those who are older, and those with other medical problems are more likely to develop serious illness.
  • There is a risk of death in severe cases.
  • Older persons and persons with pre-existing medical conditions (such as high blood pressure, heart disease, lung disease, cancer or diabetes) appear to develop serious illness more often than others.

How is COVID-19 spread from person-to-person?

COVID-19 is spread mainly by coughing, sneezing or direct contact with a sick person or with surfaces they have recently touched. It is not an airborne illness.

Can people who don’t have symptoms of COVID-19 spread the illness? 

Yes. People can have COVID-19 without having symptoms and “asymptomatic” people may infect others but it is not clear how often that occurs. The best way to prevent the spread of the disease is to avoid spending time around people. Respect the orders to stay home and practice physical distancing — staying at least 6 feet away from other people.

Why should I bother wearing a homemade face mask during the COVID-19 Pandemic if I feel fine?

Most recently, the Centres for Disease Control and other health authorities have advised people with no symptoms to wear masks over their mouths and noses to help slow the spread of the virus.  The reason for this is that this virus is contagious before symptoms appear, so by wearing a mask, you are protecting the others around you from the POSSIBILITY that you may be contagious.

Taiwan and the Czech Republic have shown to be the most successful in the world in attacking this Pandemic.  An important tool in their strategy was legally enforcing a universal use of face masks by ALL their citizens from the outset

Why would the CDC recommend cloth masks rather than Professional Quality N95 masks made commercially?

Simply…this Pandemic is simply too big for the world supply.  So doctors, nurses and front line workers get first dibs.

Clearly, cloth masks are not as effective as the N95 ones, but they are an inexpensive and easy-to-make alternative for the general community that has proven to help

Will I still have to stay at least 6 feet away from other people if I have a cloth mask on?

YES!   At the moment, Physical Distancing and Staying at home are the most important tools in the attack on this Pandemic.

Wearing a mask is also a reminder to others to keep their distance.

How did you choose your pattern - There are so many out there?

With the cooperation of a local medial clinic, we tested four models with their staff.  Our decision was based on their feedback as to comfort and ease of use.

What are your masks made of?

Two layers of high-thread-count, 100% cotton, with a layer of flannelette sandwiched between them to form a soft, yet effective, filter.

How did you choose your recipients?

Decisions are made to prioritize those with the greatest need.

How do I wash my FTC Mask?

Hand wash it regularly in hot, soapy water and air dry.

What's the correct way to wear your masks?

Covering both the nose and mouth.

Do you sterilize your masks?

Based on current research, Coronavirus dies within 72 hours in a closed, plastic bag.  All of our masks are quarantined in this way before leaving our premises.

Top of page

Scroll to Top