More than 100 prominent health officials have urging governors to make wearing cloth masks in public mandatory, citing a “preponderance of evidence” they greatly reduce the transmissibility of .

The letter was written by Jeremy Howard, a research scientist at the University of San Francisco who, along with a team of other researchers, has . Howard also in Thursday’s USA Today about the letter’s recommendation.

Just how effective would mass mask-wearing be? Research suggests it could effectively halt the spread of the virus ― but only if , and ideally all people, wear them. 

“The preponderance of evidence, in both laboratory and clinical settings, indicates that mask wearing reduces the transmissibility per contact by reducing transmission of infected droplets,”

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