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Mexican researchers roll out nose-only COVID-19 mask to be worn while eating or talking

 Researchers in Mexico have debuted a nose mask for people to wear in place of a full mask while consuming food or talking while around others, which they say reduces the risk of infection of COVID-19.


What are the details?

CBS News posted a video showing the masks being worn by a man and woman sharing a meal. The couple is seen removing masks that cover both their noses and mouths to reveal their nose-only masks underneath.

The pair proceed to eat food, take drinks, and chat with one another as they display the new product.

Apparently, the Mexican researchers weren't the first to come up with the idea. A year ago, Chinese medical workers were reportedly using a similar nose mask during meals due to the pandemic.

The Washington Examiner reported that "a study from Johns Hopkins University in August noted that cells that give people a sense of smell are a key entry point for the coronavirus into the human body, underscoring that covering the nose is important to reducing the risk of infection, as well as the mouth."

But some folks on social media were skeptical of the nose mask concept, with one saying, "I'm going to lose it if I see anyone wearing this," and another declared, "I'm from Mexico this is not a thing."

Others thought it made sense, with one person writing, "Seems like a good idea. Obviously people can't wear a mask over their mouth while eating. Seems like nose mask might be better than no mask."

A number of people on social media noted that the masks still would not take away the risk of contracting COVID-19.

One wrote, "While it helps, it still doesn't stop the emission of droplets from the mouth, nor does it prevent COVID from entering via the mouth. So if you are going to eat or drink around others, it helps, but you are still at elevated risk as are those around you."

Another added, "You can still get the droplets in your mouth. I'm not in that much of a hurry to go to a restaurant."

Anything else?

With millions in the U.S. and around the world already vaccinated against COVID-19 in ongoing drives, there is debate about whether inoculated individuals should be forced to wear masks at all when required in public.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) pushed back against a reporter Wednesday who asked that the senator wear a mask before delivering remarks at a media conference.

Cruz explained, "Yeah, when I'm talking to a TV camera I'm not going to wear a mask."

Pointing to the fellow senators surrounding him, he said, "All of us have been immunized, so..."

The Republican finally told the reporter, "You're welcome to step away, if you like," adding, "the whole point of a vaccine...CDC guidance is what we're following."

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