Health experts discouraging people from wearing N95 respirator masks

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) – Wearing masks in public is our new normal.

But health experts have concerns over one type they’re seeing some people wear.

These are N95 respirator masks, which have a breathing valve.

The air you breathe in is filtered, but the air you exhale is not, putting others at risk.

That’s why one local hospital is discouraging people from wearing them when they visit.

“What we’re worried about, especially when people cough, is that it’s more likely to cause a spread. It’s forcing and jetting (particles) out through the openings, so it might actually be pushing it a little further than it would typically,” said Paul Albrecht, Emergency Department Nurse Manager, Mayo Clinic Health System.

If you have a respirator mask and plan to visit Mayo Clinic Health System you will be asked to replace it with a mask provided by them.

However, for those who do not want to replace their respirator mask, they will give you a regular one to wear over it.