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Biden administration to provide hundreds of millions of free N95 masks

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Biden administration to provide hundreds of millions of free N95 masks

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The Biden administration will distribute hundreds of millions of free N95 masks from the strategic national stockpile, a White House official confirmed on Wednesday.

The administration’s plan is to disperse some 400 million N95s to pharmacies and community sites, giving more Americans easier access to medical-grade face masks amid surging COVID-19 cases. .

The White House official said the administration will begin shipping masks at the end of this week and they should be available from the end of next week.

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President Biden departs the White House en route to Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, November 12, 2021, as he heads to Camp David for the weekend.
(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The move follows the updated guidelines of the The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which clarified last week that certain types of masks are more effective than others in protecting against COVID-19, especially amid the rise in arrow of highly contagious omicron variant.

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“Some masks and respirators provide higher levels of protection than others and some may be more difficult to tolerate or wear consistently than others,” the CDC wrote in its updated guidance. “It is very important to wear a properly fitted mask or respirator that is comfortable for you and provides good protection.”

Biden administration to provide hundreds of millions of free N95 masks

 |  Today Headlines

Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, arrive at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on Monday, Dec. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Politico was the first to report the plan.

Last week, President Biden said his administration would make high-quality masks available to the American people free of charge.

“I know we all wish we could finally be done with wearing masks. I get it. But they’re a really important tool in stopping the spread, especially of the highly transmissible omicron variant,” he said. -he declares.

The CDC’s 2020 guidelines to wear only cloth masks were originally based on concerns that N95 masks were too scarce, but that’s no longer an issue, according to a recent Washington Post report.

Biden administration to provide hundreds of millions of free N95 masks

 |  Today Headlines

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, delivers an opening statement on Capitol Hill January 11, 2022. (Greg Nash/Pool via REUTERS)

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The CDC has faced backlash in recent weeks for its guidance not only on masks, but also for a confusing update on the effectiveness of rapid test and the time that people infected with COVID-19 should quarantine.

Fox News’ Erin McEwan, Andrew Mark Miller and Shiv Sudakhar contributed to this report.

Biden administration to provide hundreds of millions of free N95 masks

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