It is best to prepare a plastic bag for unused masks. Bare masks that contact clothing or other things will increase the risk of transmission.
When removing the mask, try not to touch the outside of the mask. Remember to wash your hands immediately after removing the mask. Try not to reuse disposable medical masks. Once the mask is broken or dirty, it needs to be replaced with a new one immediately.
Currently expanding the production of masks and the continued demand for masks can make the number of masks circulating in the market reach hundreds of millions. The use of a large number of masks also means that in the future, a large number of masks will be discarded or disposed of after use. So how should these disposable masks be used after being worn and can no longer be used to avoid new infections?
“In the hospital, these masks will be put into a clean, airtight bag and thrown into a yellow trash can.” Tao Xiaoqing, director of the Department of Interventional Vascular Medicine at Weihai Haida Hospital, said that medical waste is generally divided into black, yellow and red… Among them, black plastic bags contain domestic waste, yellow plastic bags contain medical waste (including infectious waste), and red plastic contains radioactive waste and other special medical waste.
The relevant person in charge of the Chinese Preventive Medicine Association said that masks are medical waste, according to the “Category of Medical Waste Classification” cotton balls, cotton swabs, drainage slivers, gauze, and other dressings; disposable sanitary products, disposable medical supplies, and Disposable medical devices are infectious waste.
And more masks are used outside the hospital to prevent and avoid infection. These masks are not necessarily infected with the virus. What should I do?
Du Huanzheng, a professor at the School of Environment and Sustainable Development of Tongji University, said in an exclusive interview with the reporter of Science and Technology Daily that wearing masks is to prevent virus infection. Masks that have not been exposed to the new coronavirus are treated as general solid waste and domestic waste. However, judging from the current situation, ordinary citizens can’t judge whether they have been exposed to the new coronavirus when they go out. In accordance with the principle of caution, from the perspective of maximizing the protection of the life and health of the public, it is recommended to put used masks in sealed bags such as plastic bags. In cities such as Shanghai where garbage classification is implemented, put sealed bags in “harmful garbage” bins.
What if some cities do not have stricter rules for garbage separation and disposal? Tao Xiaoqing suggested that the mask waste at home should be placed in a bag to avoid secondary pollution. High temperature and medical 75% alcohol can kill the new coronavirus. It is recommended to use alcohol spray to sterilize the bag and seal it before discarding it.
As for how long the masks infected with the virus will still be able to infect, related virus experts said that the new coronavirus is RNA virus, and the survival time of RNA virus detached from cells in the air is currently uncertain, ranging from hours to days.