Starting Friday, Feb. 11, members of the public interested in receiving a free N95 mask provided by North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) can pick them up at two convenient locations in Orange County.
Orange County Health Department will distribute masks at the following locations while supplies last:
The Orange County Public Library
137 W. Margaret Lane, Hillsborough
Monday - Thursday, 10 am to 7 pm
Friday - Saturday, 9 am to 6 pm
Inter-Faith Council for Social Service (IFC)
110 W. Main Street, Carrboro
Monday - Friday, 9 am to 5 pm
You may also request free masks from the NCDHHS at: https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/RequestMasks.
Community members with questions may contact the health department’s call center at (919) 913-8088 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Spanish and other languages available.
High Quality Masks
Use the best quality and best-fitting mask you can get, especially in higher risk situations and if you are at increased risk for severe illness. Scenarios that call for better protection can include being in close and prolonged contact with people whose vaccination status is unknown, being in crowded indoor settings, riding on public transportation (especially when you can’t keep distance), and working at a job where you interact with large numbers of people.
The highest quality masks, in order, are:
- N95, KN95 and KF94. These disposable masks are better at filtering the virus and are more widely available now for the public. Replacement depends on amount of wear. These masks can be more expensive. Beware of counterfeits.
- Surgical masks. These disposable masks should be tested to meet a national standard (ASTM 2/3).
- Cloth masks with at least two layers. A disposable mask also can be worn underneath a cloth mask. (Note: N95/KN95 masks should not be layered with other masks.)
Masks that are loose, with gaps around your face or nose, are not as helpful in protecting you or others. For visuals of these tips, visit the guidance for improved mask use from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
If you see someone without a face covering, assume they have a valid reason for not wearing one and increase your distance from that person.