COVID-19: How many lives have masks saved?

What countries are taken into account?

In order to keep the data as comparable as possible, the researchers focused on a group of 50 countries with the highest life expectancy in the world, high levels of education and living standards, as well as trust in the government in question.

Data from four countries in the Southern Hemisphere (New Zealand, Australia, Chile and Argentina) were not taken into account, because seasonal influences can distort the numbers – for example, because people in the Southern Hemisphere often meet outside in the warm summer months – Hence the use of masks is much less important.

Data from the United States and Canada has also been excluded. There has been no standardized regulation of masks because health policy is done at the state and county levels.

Countries with mask requirements in the study period included: Bahrain, Germany, Estonia, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Austria, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Czech Republic , Hungary, United Arab Emirates, Cyprus.

Countries that do not have a mask requirement include: Andorra, Belarus, Belgium, Brunei, Denmark, Finland, France, Great Britain. Italy, Croatia, Liechtenstein, Netherlands, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland.

Russia (February 7, 2020) and South Korea (February 15, 2020) were the first two countries to introduce mask requirements. The last countries examined were Greece (May 4, 2020) and Ireland (May 5, 2020).

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