LETTER: COVID a safety crisis not a medical crisis-Reader

Dear Editor

Dr. Burley’s recent letter in the Picton Gazette, urging our community to protect itself against the Ford government’s COVID incompetence [my words], by continuing to use face masks indoors, was: ethical, caring, and courageous in light of every doctor’s second oath to support government policies.  Canadians need to finally understand that the COVID pandemic is a safety crisis, and not a medical crisis. It should have been managed by safety professionals who study and know the protective science of contamination control.

We need to accept the highly contagious COVID virus travels easily inside buildings as a fine aerosol of airborne viral contamination. Only respiratory protection in the form of an absorbent face mask, not plastic face shields, is the most direct and effective way to prevent personal and environmental contamination. Our COVID ignorant governments withdrew mask mandates from buildings because they simply do not understand how masks work.

It’s clear Dr. Tam and every provincial Public Health Agency has not studied mask technology because they’ve mismanaged it repeatedly. Remember coughing in our elbows? For two years, governments’ COVID teams have failed to grow a protective face mask culture for Canada. That’s two years of unnecessary shutdowns, and national suffering in utter COVID confusion. The people in Wuhan Province grew their mask culture many years ago as protection against industrial pollutants, and when COVID hit, they were ready.  Most western epidemiologists blinded themselves politically to the great face mask success in Wuhan, but the numbers reveal the facts, and Wuhan still has the lowest numbers in the world.  The dangerous duplicity of the medical world shocks us when we visit hospitals and clinics, where plastic face shields are absolutely rejected by armed guards. The medical world understands that plastic face shields are dangerous to personal and public health, but they cannot speak out publicly against them because of that oath to support government.   Why are we playing COVID roulette by trusting bad science used in testing vaccines? Will the vaccine protect you? Avoiding infection can be critical for the unprotected 20 per cent of us, who potentially will not benefit from the vaccine, but won’t know it until we become exposed.

The face mask is critical PPE, and it will stop every new variant, when worn faithfully indoors.

Let’s take a close look at how the face mask really works against a highly contagious airborne virus that we don’t want to shelter, or share with family and friends.  When mask manufacturers test “the stopping power” of face masks they generally shoot tiny dry particles of a certain range, about the size of smoke particles, through various mask materials to determine which materials are best at filtering, or stopping the particles.  If 80 per cent of the particles of a particular size are stopped, the mask is rated as 80 per cent efficient.  The University of Edinburgh found that two layers of regular dish towel material sewn together can provide this level of respiratory protection.

A close up of the travelling virus reveals a tiny fragment of virus protected by an envelope of watery phlegm, exhaled by an infected person, and drifting around. When the tiny water droplet hits the paper/cloth material of a face mask, the water envelope is immediately absorbed and stripped away from the virus, exposing it to air, and it dies on the surface. The stopping power of an absorbent mask is far higher than rated, because of this powerful mechanism of absorption. Masks should never be treated with water repellents, or anything that hinders absorption.

Last year I debunked the “two meter safe distance” or social distance. It was the result of a flawed study that determined how far an infected man’s spit could fly, because large drops carry a large viral load. What this lab group failed to study was the additional viral load carried by the much smaller droplets that form aerosols, and are released at the same time. Studies have shown that this airborne viral contamination is responsible for 99 per cent of infections, versus 1 per cent from skin contamination. Knowledgeable authorities have rejected hand washing outside of hospitals and clinics.

It’s a futile exercise founded on ignorance, a waste of costly resources, and distracts us dangerously from the far more significant risk of inhalation.

Steve Staniek

Woodville.