DES MOINES, Iowa - The Polk County Health Department is recommending people follow the Centers for Disease Control guidance on wearing masks in public.
The department is specifically asking residents to abide by CDC advice to wear homemade face cloths in places such as grocery stores or pharmacies, where social distancing of 6 feet is difficult to maintain.
It says simple cloth face coverings help keep people who don't know they have the virus from spreading it to others.
Healthcare staff in Polk Couny who do not provide direct patient care are now wearing homemade cloth coverings to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The department is urging local businesses to follow the sames practice when dealing with the public.
Healthcare staff who treat patients are wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) until the health department runs out of supply.
The Polk County Medical Coordination Center is asking for public donations of specific items to help fight the pandemic. They are safety goggles or other protective eye wear, hand sanitizer, bleach wipes or other sanitizer wipes, and thermometers (oral, ear, or temporal).