Iowa Specialty Hospital

Mask Up - When, Where, How

While in public, you should use a face mask, scarf, bandana, face shield, or other face covering.  N95 masks should be reserved for healthcare workers only.  Follow these protocols for when, why, and how to wear a face mask or other face covering:


  • While in public, you should use a mask, scarf or other face covering. This includes indoor spaces and outdoor spaces when you are near others who are not in your immediate household.
  • Those with breathing challenges or those under the age of two should not wear a mask.


  • To protect others: When you wear a mask you protect others by preventing the spread of your own germs.
  • Unknown COVID-19 status: You may have COVID-19 or have been exposed to the virus without showing symptoms.
  • Protect the community: More people wearing masks results in better protection for everyone.


  • Masks/face coverings should fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face.
  • Masks/face coverings should be secured with ties or ear loops.
  • Masks/face coverings should include multiple layers of fabric.
  • Masks/face coverings should allow for breathing without restriction.
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before putting on face covering.
  • Cover both your nose and mouth with your mask/face covering.
  • Avoid a lot of touching/adjusting your mask/face covering.
  • Before removing your mask, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth when removing your mask.
  • Completely remove your mask/face covering while eating.
  • Masks/face coverings made of cloth should be washed and dried after each use and show no damage or change to shape. 
  • Wash in hot water with regular detergent and allow to air dry or dry on a low heat cycle.
  • When your cloth mask is not in use, fold it with the side that goes toward your mouth folded to the inside. Store the mask/face covering in a resealable bag or other clean storage container.
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