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DOH says bra, diaper, panty alternatives to N95 mask

People who cannot buy N95 face masks due to high demand may use alternatives to protect themselves from the dangers of volcanic ash, the Department of Health said Tuesday.

Bras, diapers and panties can be used as substitute to face masks, according to Health Assistant Secretary Ma. Francia Laxamana.

“Meron pa ibang creative ways of doing things. Isa po yung kamiseta, ilagay ninyo po. Meron pong isang creative, yung bra at panty,” Laxamana said at a news conference in Malacañang.

“Ang diapers open so pwede po siya. Actually kung titingnan niyo ang mga diapers merong dry. Puwede niyong basain ng konti para hindi kayo ma-suffocate.”

Following Taal Volcano’s steam-driven explosion on Sunday, the DOH said exposure to volcanic ash can cause nose and throat irritation, coughing, bronchitis-like illness, discomfort while breathing, eye irritation and minor skin problems.

The department has since advised the public to minimize exposure to ash, stay indoors as much as possible and use dust masks.

Prices of face masks, however, have gone up due to a surge in demand, especially in Metro Manila which had experienced ashfall from Taal Volcano.

President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday vowed to impose a cap on the cost of face masks while the Department of Trade and Industry said it would go after retailers found to have unreasonably increased their prices. — RSJ, GMA News