How long will you have to wear a mask? Here’s what the experts in the industry say…

If you’re hoping the arrival of a coronavirus vaccine means you’ll be able to put away your mask, the experts warn we’re not close to that point yet. 

It could take several months — probably deep into 2021 or even 2022 — before things get back to something close to normal in the US.

The first shipments of the vaccine would mark just the beginning of what could be a long and difficult road toward the end of the pandemic that has upended life and killed more than a quarter-million people in the US.

Many health experts say you may need to wear a mask for another year minimum and perhaps up to 2-3 years in situations where people are in condensed crowds.

“I think the news is encouraging, but it is a ways away, between proving that the vaccine would work and getting it authorized and being able to deliver it to enough people that it makes a difference,” said Dr. Patrick Kachur, a professor at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health in New York City, in an interview with NBC’s Today Show. “I’m thinking that hopefully by next winter we’ll have a decent level of coverage in the general population that we can make that happen.”

“It’s going to be a slow process and it’s going to be a process with ups and downs, like we’ve seen already,” said Dr. Bill Moss, an infectious-disease expert at Johns Hopkins University.

"We want to make sure our immune system has time to work and develop against (the virus), so it's not a magic bullet as soon as you take it,"

Shan Soe-Lin, Ph.D., a lecturer in global affairs at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, and a trained epidemoioglost who predicted in April, 2019 that mask-wearing would continue until at least the spring of 2021, said that she believes the trend will continue as a social norm even as vaccines begin to be distributed into 2021 and beyond.

There is no dispute that the country needs to open back up. What is important, however, is that when it does the country opens in a safe manner. Should face masks become mandated and more strickly enforced around the country, the sippyMASK is a great solution in many social situations where people want to drink or snack!

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