FSU students return to class under new mask policy favoring N95 face coverings

Cloth, surgical or N95? There are many kinds of masks to choose from but, this semester,...
Cloth, surgical or N95? There are many kinds of masks to choose from but, this semester, Florida State University is expecting its students to opt for medical grade N95s.(Savannah Kelley | WCTV)
Published: Jan. 5, 2022 at 3:37 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Cloth, surgical or N95? There are many kinds of masks to choose from but, this semester, Florida State University is expecting its students to opt for medical grade N95s.

Experts say these masks provide a better fit and protection from COVID-19.

Students who spoke with WCTV say most people are not wearing medical grade masks on campus: Most are still opting for surgical or cloth coverings.

While those are cheaper and more easily accessible, they’re not as effective as N95s.

“I just feel like the cloth ones are more affordable and accessible and comfortable,” said FSU student Olivia Moores.

Some say they didn’t know FSU had even updated its mask policy.

“No, I didn’t. Is that actually a thing? No way,” said Marc Salinas.

Dr. Daniel Van Durme, chair of FSU’s Medical Advisory Committee, says the school is recommending N95s because they offer better fit and protection.

“The thought behind it is that there’s no question that an N95 mask is more effective than all of the ad hoc masks that we have seen,” Dr. Van Durme said.

One student said after learning about the new recommendation that she would go out and buy new masks.

“If they’re telling me to go ahead and do it, I’m gonna do it,” said Kierra Dickens. “I’m gonna comply.”

But others, like Sierra Sanchez, said the price tag of a medical grade mask was just too steep.

“I’m back up in campus. I haven’t found a job yet,” she said. “It’s a financial thing for me.”

Instead, Sanchez is double masking indoors to add an extra layer of protection.

She said most of her peers aren’t wearing N95s, either.

“I do see a few students that have medical grade or an N95. But it’s not like an overwhelming majority of students,” she said.

Early in the pandemic, N95s were very hard to find. They’re still not as widespread as cloth or surgical masks, but you can find them at most drug stores or online.

Copyright 2022 WCTV. All rights reserved.