- Swiss researchers have developed a clear face mask designed to make the interaction between healthcare workers and their patients more personal.
- The mask may enter the market as early as 2021 and will be sold to the medical community first, with the possibility of eventually being available to the general public.
- As the coronavirus disease has resulted in millions adapting to covering their faces in public, communicating with others has also become more difficult, especially for those in the deaf community.
- A clear face mask would make it easier to both cover your face and connect with people.
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Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, millions have adapted to wearing masks in public, communicating with people by using only half of our faces.
But researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) have developed a transparent mask that could allow people to cover their faces to help in curbing the spread of the disease and also make it easier to connect with others.
Dubbed HelloMasks, the biodegradable clear mask is designed to replace the typical tri-fold surgical masks worn by healthcare workers. It’s also made of a material that prevents the wearer’s breath from fogging the masks.
The concept has been in the works for the past two years, and the team has created a startup — HMCARE — to market the design. HMCARE has raised $1 million in funding and is slated to introduce the mask to the market in early 2021.
They may eventually be able to be worn by anyone, but they were developed specifically to make the interaction between medical professionals and patients more personal, according to the researchers. The masks will be sold to the medical community first.
As masks have become more deeply ingrained in our daily lives, other innovations have also sprouted up to make covering our faces easier in public. As Business Insider’s Mary Meisenzahl reported, an Israeli company developed a face mask that can be worn while you eat and is controlled remotely via a lever.
Masks have also proven to be a problem for those in the deaf community as the face coverings make speechreading difficult, but a clear mask could be a solution.
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