Lions Wear Masks: UGHE Stand in Solidarity with #WorldMaskWeek

Last week, UGHE Lions took part in #WorldMaskWeek, an initiative designed to inform and educate people across the world about the effectiveness of mask wearing to help stem the exponential spread of COVID-19. UGHE joined other participating organizations globally, including the Pandemic Action Network, WHO, CDC, Africa CDC, and Global Citizen, all rallying around a single, unifying message. Read more about the movement here.

The simple act of wearing a mask aligns with UGHE’s equity agenda. Blocking the spray of droplets — from sneezing, coughing, talking, singing or shouting — slows the rate of transmission, which in turn protects the lives of the most vulnerable who might be more prone to infection, or serious disease-related side effects. Stemming the transmission rate also allows health services to meet the needs of patients requiring care for health challenges other than COVID-19  — such as cancer patients requiring regular treatment — as well as those whose socio-economic circumstances would be severely affected by national, or local lockdown measures, often implemented to prevent further spread. 

Innovative measures to promote mask wearing have been implemented by the Government of Rwanda and associated health organizations, among many other evidence-based interventions to successfully slow the rate of COVID-19 transmission in the country. Deployed by the Ministry of Health, five human-size robots are programmed to detect people not wearing masks then instruct them to wear masks properly, perform temperature screening, take readings, deliver video messages and detect people not wearing masks then instruct them to wear masks properly.

Showing solidarity with the movement, members of the UGHE community shared their own mask pictures and the reasons why they choose to wear a face covering to help promote widespread mask usage within their respective communities.