The coronavirus disease COVID-19 pandemic warrants community protection through personal protective equipment (PPE) that commonly includes a face mask to prevent spread of infection. By early May 2020, wearing face masks for the general public was made mandatory in at least 75 countries that comprise about 88.0% of the global population.
Why is cotton so important in combating the COVID-19 pandemic? Head of the Technical Information Services, Dr Keshav Kranthi explains that a meta-analysis of research publications showed that due to their unique physical and chemical, cotton fibres were found to be superior to synthetic fibres such as polyester and nylon in filtration and in being detrimental to viruses such as the SARS-CoV2, pathogenic bacteria and fungi as well as in comfort and breathability. Based on scientific evidence, government agencies in India and USA have recommended using cotton fabrics for preparation of home-made non-medical masks.
Read more in the bulletin below.