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Wear a Mask to Save Lives from COVID-19

Illustration of a group of people wearing masks. Each mask has a letter and the letters spell "Save Lives".

(This resource was created before COVID-19 vaccines were widely available in the United States and before the CDC changed its guidance on COVID prevention. Please refer to the CDC for the most up-to-date COVID-19 information.)

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.

We can all play a part in preventing the spread of COVID-19 by wearing a face mask in public. The more people that wear face masks, the more lives we will save, and the sooner we can return to normal.

The Alliance for Aging Research is working to help older adults during the COVID-19 crisis. Click here for resources to help you stay informed and ways for you to get involved.

This effort is made possible with support from The Pfizer Foundation, Inc.