The might now be an alternative to the heavily sought after N95 mask.
According to the New York Post, “MIT researchers have developed a silicone face mask that can be sterilized and reused up to 100 times. It’s made with two N95-grade breathing filters that can be removed and replaced after each use to be sure viral particles are being eliminated from the environment.”
They explain that if these masks are implemented, hospitals will no longer have to worry about finding N95 respirators. They add that the transparent material will also improve communication between patients and staff.
James Young, a radiation oncologist who is part of MIT’s team of developers, states, “We really put our heads together to try to come up with something that was sustainable, and that’s how we really came up with this reusable, scalable, conformable, flexible mask.”
When available, the masks will run for about $15; the disposable filters will be about $1.
Right now, the team is working to fast-track the product into production. They’ve also asked the Food and Drug Administration for an emergency use authorization to give consumers and the health-care industry access to their masks as soon as possible.