Face masks to prevent transmission of COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis [article]

Yanni Li, Mingming Liang, Liang Gao, Mubashir Ayaz Ahmed, John Patrick Uy, Ce Cheng, Qin Zhou, Chenyu Sun
2020 medRxiv   pre-print
AbstractBackgroundBased on the current status of the COVID-19 global pandemic, there is an urgent need to systematically evaluate the effectiveness of wearing masks to protect public health from COVID-19 infection.MethodsWe conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the effectiveness of using face masks to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2. Relevant articles were retrieved from PubMed, Web of Science, ScienceDirect, Cochrane Library, and Chinese National Knowledge Infrastructure
more » ... edge Infrastructure (CNKI), VIP (Chinese) database. There were no language restrictions. This study was registered with PROSPERO under the number CRD42020211862.ResultsA total of 6 case-control studies were included. In general, wearing a mask was associated with a significantly reduced risk of COVID-19 infection (OR = 0.38, 95% CI = 0.21-0.69, I2 = 54.1%). Heterogeneity modifiers were investigated by subgroup analysis. For healthcare workers group, masks were shown to have a reduce risk of infection by nearly 70%. Studies in China showed a higher protective effect than other countries. Adjusted estimates and subgroup analyses showed similar findings.ConclusionsThe results of this systematic review and meta-analysis support the conclusion that wearing a mask could reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection.
doi:10.1101/2020.10.16.20214171 fatcat:y5eumy2ks5gbhhv5sgomy57egi