There’s a simple thing we can all do to save tens of thousands of lives.

Wear a face mask in public.

According to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington, if 95% of Americans wore a mask when they go out in public, we could save 130,000 lives.

“People need to know that wearing masks can reduce transmission of the virus by as much as 50 percent, and those who refuse are putting their lives, their families, their friends, and their communities at risk.”

—IMHE Director Dr. Christopher Murray

If you are going out in public, wear a mask to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. Masks can keep people from spreading the virus through talking, coughing, or sneezing. Studies are finding that people can spread coronavirus before they have symptoms, or if they are infected but never develop symptoms (a significant number of cases).  And infected people can spread the virus just by talking. Face masks combined with other preventive measures, including frequent hand-washing, social distancing, and avoiding crowded or poorly ventilated spaces, help to significantly slow the spread of the virus.