As officials continue to look for efficient strategies to combat the surge in coronavirus (COVID-19) cases across the country, the city of Philadelphia has been recognized as one of the top U.S. cities to comply with wearing masks.
According to a nationwide survey with a quarter-million responses, the likelihood that five Philadelphians you run into on our streets will all have face-coverings varies — approximately 60 to 80 percent wear face-coverings in the spread across regions like West and Northeast Philadelphia, as well as Center City and Northwest neighborhoods.
Masks were mandated for city residents on June 26, 2020. Exceptions, however, were made for young children and at times for adults who are able to maintain at least 6 feet apart from others outside. A week later, Governor Wolf followed Philadelphia’s lead with a similar mask-wearing mandate for the entire state of Pennsylvania.
Several studies have found airborne transmission via breathing, talking, coughing, and sneezing to be the dominant route for viral spread. A study in the U.S. found that “[i]n the community, masks appeared to be effective with and without hand hygiene, and both together are more protective.”
Philadelphia is also implementing a media campaign, which aims to promote mask use across the state of Pennsylvania. The messages appear on SEPTA buses, mobile billboards, social media, print newspapers, radio spots, posters, and flyers. The campaign features two messages — “Love your neighbor. Wear a mask.” and “Philly never backs down. Mask up.”