Tuesday, March 31, 2020

10. Face Mask Research. April 2020. Government-issued face masks

April 15, 2020

It is over a month, but the 3 big pharmacies have no surgical masks to sell. So, the general population has to look for suppliers. Most wear other types of masks. Seletar Shopping Mall. No surgical masks for sale. 

However, in April 14, 2020, NTUC at Serangoon Gardens sell surgical masks at $32 for a box of 50 pieces. All the fabric face masks were sold out on April 13, 2020.

As seen on April 15, 2020, more Singaporeans wear face masks when they go out. Many wear the government-issued face masks which were issued in white, black and yellowish-brown polyurethane colours.

April 3, 2020. Value Store store in Toa Payoh Hub has a large number of face masks for sale.

Unity Pharmacy has two types of face masks for sale

Guardian Pharmacy in Toa Payoh has limited stock of fabric face mask for sale.
Watson Pharmacy said it has not stock of any face masks for sale.

From April 5 to 12, 2020, the Singapore Government gave Singaporeans a face mask each. There appeared to be 4 types - white, jean-material, Cori Supermask and the black fabric face masks. Collection of these reusable face masks are done from the community centres or resident committees.

Two images of the Government-issued face masks are:

A free government-issued fabric face mask

Some of the wearers of the government-issued masks are shown below:

3-ply fabric face masks collected from the community centre
or residents' committee in HDB apartment blocks.

Government-issued face mask meant for adults, but the government
did not issue specific kid's face masks. Only adult face masks.

One size fits all. No children's size as this government-issued
mask is meant for adults

Adult size - 3-ply fabric face mask

Cori Supermask (left) is a polyurethane face mask sold in some NTUC supermarkets at $4.90

Despite increasing Covid-19 cases every day, less than 10% of the Singapore residents wear face masks when they go out and be with large groups.

Few Singapore residents wear face masks before April 15, 2020 as seen
in this image of the queue at Toa Payoh Hub
If they wear face masks, around 90% wear the "surgical" mask which is supposed to be single-use.

The child is wearing an adult face mask which is not suitable for her. Children's face
masks are difficult to source, hence many parents improvise using adult ones.

Kid's face mask

Bought from Lorong 7, Toa Payoh wet market at $1.00

Juice shop at a mall. She purchased her own fabric face mask

As at April 8, 2020, the Singapore Government is looking for sewers to make 50,000 face masks.A law was just introduced to stop gatherings for parties even with relatives inside the home. People are advised to wear a face mask when going out as there are asymptomatic Covid-19 people.

Partial lockdown from Apr 7 to May 4. The essential services are permitted to open. The others work from home. Playgrounds and public fitness areas are taped to prevent communal meetings. People are fined for not keeping the social distancing. Government officers check retail shops to ensure social distancing is carried out.

MON 20 APR 20

In the afternoon, went to a GP to get right ear irrigated as it was impacted with ear wax. 6 days of ear-wax dissolving ear drops were used at two drops 3 x per day. No more ringing or hard-to-hear ringing sounds inside the ear.

Went to Seletar Mall NTUC. All shoppers wore masks (compulsory since 14 Apr) and two ladies checked at entrance to ensure shoppers wore masks. I went to a fruit stall to buy two slices of pineapples. I pulled down my mask to talk to the ladies. A lady in her 40s locked eyes with me and told me to wear the mask. Fortunately I had not got the pineapples as I would have eaten them and got fined. No eating but can buy home to eat. I quickly wore my mask to avoid a fine of $300. The lady could be the "ambassador" for Covid-19 social distancing and mask wearing enforcement.

Later I went to Cold Storage Greenwich V mall as NTUC Seletar had no stock of white sugar and tomatoes. I bought the brown sugar.

MASK SITUATION at Seletar Mall and Greenwich V Mall.
1. Watson - Selling surgical masks at $32 for a box of 50. China made.
2. Guardina - Selling surgicla masks at $11.40 per packet. Agent re-packing likely.
3. Unity Pharmacy - Some face mask

1.  Around 80% wear surgical masks, mostly blue in colour.
2. Fabric face masks about 10%. Mostly black from government-issued masks,  free of charge. 
3. Others - polyurethane Cori supermask, self-sewn, old paper masks (one retiree).

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