Bangladesh has established a guideline with minimum requirements for production of non-medical fabric masks for community use by local producers with technical expertise of the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO).
The guidelines follow WHO recommendations and incorporate specifications and quality control parameters to produce the non-medical fabric masks by local manufacturers, a press release issued by the UN Dhaka office said on Tuesday.The new standards and quality control parameters for manufacturing fabric mask have already been providing to Ready-made Garment (RMG) sector and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to join the fight against COVID-19, it added.
The standards have been developed in coordination with Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA) with technical advice from WHO, that led a working group of local PPE experts supported by USAID, JICA, BUET, ICDDR,B and FAO to elaborate the specifications and minimum testing requirements for fabric masks,
Filtration efficiency, breathability of the fabric mask, and properties of the material are the key parameters in the guideline of mask production for community use: “We welcome the new set of standards which will make it easier for national manufacturers and NGOs to produce washable masks at an affordable price. This way we can avoid disposable masks adding to the waste problem.” said Mia Seppo, UN Resident coordinator in Dhaka.
In addition to support for elaborating the standards of mask production, the UN is also working closely with the Bangladesh government for implementation of information campaigns aimed at increasing awareness about the importance and correct use of fabric masks, together with other protection measures such as maintaining physical distance and observing hand hygiene.