A DOCTOR has issued a warning to people about face masks, ahead of new rules coming into force tomorrow. 

Speaking on Good Morning Britain, Dr Sarah Jarvis said wearing a mask alone will not protect people from coronavirus.

She also warned people against using face masks that have filters on them.

As of Friday, the public will have to wear face masks in shops and on public transport in England, as the government tries to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic.

If people refuse to wear a mask they could be slapped with a £100 fine.

Dr Jarvis, who is standing in for Dr Hilary while he's on holiday, said that masks have to be used effectively, and not become contaminated, suggesting people wear them at home to get used to it.

Wandsworth Times:

  • Dr Sarah Jarvis on ITV's Good Morning Britain

If people don't wash their hands regularly they risk contaminating their mask and face.

Dr Jarvis said: "One of the big issues with face masks is that if you fiddle with them and you haven't washed your hands then you could contaminate your face.

"It's a really good idea to start wearing one when you are at home.

"That will mean you can get into the habit of putting it on only using the straps, not touching your face when taking it on or off.

"Not putting it underneath your chin or dangling it on one ear - none of those things will work and could contaminate you.

"And not putting it under your nose."


Dr Sarah also said masks without a filter are better.

She explained: "On the whole, we recommend the ones that don’t have a filter.

"There are masks that have filters, the so-called PPE masks – anything with N-95 on it or FFP3 – but those should absolutely be reserved for healthcare workers because there is a global shortage of them."

She then recommended that face masks or coverings have "at least two layers, preferably three" to provide ultimate protection from germs. 

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"That’s new because we’re now seeing that there’s better evidence of you protecting other people if you’re wearing two or three layers," she explained. 

Dr Sarah added: "In the past, Dr Hilary has said anything is OK because that’s what the evidence was then, but now we’ve moved on and we know that it’s better if you wear two layers."

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced on July 14 that wearing masks in shops and supermarkets will be mandatory in England from Friday, with anyone failing to comply facing a fine of up to £100.

The new regulations will be published today, less than 24 hours before they come into effect.

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV.