Supplies of surgical masks drying up due to COVID-19. Manufacturers increasing the production and export of medical-grade masks and N95 respirators. Sewers stitching masks to free up supplies for frontline workers and changing advice about who should wear one.
If you’ve been following recent headlines and are starting to feel a bit of face mask fatigue, just imagine how you’d feel if you’d been wearing one for a week and a half.
Kaila Radan, a nurse at the Northern Haida Gwaii Hospital in Masset, told the Observer she and other frontline workers at the hospital have been wearing extra personal protective equipment, including masks, for more than a week as a precaution against the virus.
“The straps from them, they fold around over your ear, which creates a lot of pressure if you’re working a 12-hour shift,” Radan said. “I had worked a couple of shifts and my ears were sore.”
So when a nurse friend in Ontario sent Radan a photo of a simple headband that helps relieve the pressure, she decided to make one on her day off.
She said the design is basically a fabric headband with buttons attached, which gives the wearer something other than their ears to hook mask straps on to.
While Radan said she’s “by no means a professional seamstress,” her and her roommate craft a lot, so she had fabric scraps around the house ready to go.
She has also been searching for more materials in Haida Gwaii buy-and-sell Facebook groups, since she’d made eight of the headbands as of April 7.
“It’s something to work on while I’m puttering around the house,” she told the Observer. “I figured I’d make a couple for other people.”
Radan said she was planning to give the extra headbands to other hospital staff.
“If there’s demand I’m happy to make them.”
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