Amid spread of Omicron, Hawaii schools get a big donation of N95 masks

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Published: Jan. 27, 2022 at 2:18 PM HST|Updated: Jan. 27, 2022 at 2:37 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii Pacific Health donated 50,000 N95 face masks to the state Department of Education in effort to keep students and teachers in the classroom.

School officials said the donated masks will be prioritized for employees in health-related or higher-risk positions.

The CDC and state Health Department have recommended N95 masks to improve protection against the highly contagious Omicron variant and slow the spread of COVID.

“What we know about Omicron and this surge is that the greatly enhanced ability of the virus to spread means that we must increase our level of protection,” said Dr. Melinda Ashton, HPH executive vice president and chief quality officer.

“These donated N95 masks add to the precautions already being taken to make in-person learning safer.”

DOE said schools have disposable surgical face masks on hand for students or staff who may have forgotten their mask at home or need a replacement mask during the day.

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