CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER
Dr. Robert Arnot
Chief Medical Officer
Greetings, my name is Dr. Bob Arnot and I have joined AirQueen as Chief Medical Officer to help bring the highest possible level of protection against COVID to the American public at a time when the right mask could make a lifesaving difference. I have over 44 years of experience in medicine where I’ve run an emergency medicine service of nearly 100 hospitals, served as chief medical correspondent for NBC’s Dateline, Today and Nightly News shows, medical correspondent at CBS News, and continue today covering the pandemic for a variety of national and international broadcasting platforms from Larry King and Fox to PBS and Al Jazeera.
I’ve also worked in many disease outbreaks as a medical doctor and a humanitarian board member for Save the Children and the UN High Commission for refugees including cholera during the Rwandan Genocide, Ebola in Uganda, Sleeping Sickness in South Sudan, malaria during the Mozambique foods, HIV/AIDS in Botswana, Zimbabwe and Haiti and Dengue in Nicaragua. During COVID, I’ve collaborated with one of the country’s leading medical centers to bring the latest advances to the medical community and general public.
Ask Dr. Bob!
I’m here to help! Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. Ask Dr. Bob a question?
Why AirQUEEN™ | Joining the Effort to Protect the World
The onset of the recent COVID 19 pandemic has been a significant experience for everyone. For myself, with schools about to open and my seven-year-old second grader eager to go back, I volunteered to buy the local schools masks. Fortunately, several new studies had come out to serve as guides. The first was a review in Lancet of 172 observational studies, demonstrating a large reduction in the risk of infection with masks. They concluded that the N95 masks offered 96% protection against the virus, Surgical masks offered only 67% protection.
Then Duke university did an excellent comparison of a large range of masks ranking a fitted N95 as the best, followed by surgical and poly/cotton masks. At the bottom of the list were bandanas and fleece. I tried to purchase the N95 mask for the schools but found them in short supply since healthcare providers needed them so desperately. I also found they were hard to breathe through, difficult to fit and very tough to wear all day long in school.
Then I came across a new category, the N95 substantial equivalent. What does that mean? It means that the mask provides 95% or greater protection against the virus just like the hospital N95 but with ear loops instead of a band around the back of the neck. In fact they are cleared by the FDA for use during surgery. This seemed like a perfect solution since buying them wouldn’t detract from the heroic efforts of our healthcare providers and would offer my son, his friends and teachers the ultimate protection.
I ended up purchasing 1,000 Air Queen masks with their FDA 510k approved N95 substantial equivalent classification and their paper light all day comfort fit for three local elementary schools. As a US Ski Team and Olympic Games physician I ran a physiology laboratory. What impressed me most was how the Air Queen effected physiology with a lower heart rate, lower skin temperature, lower CO2 levels and vastly easier breathing effort. As soon as they arrived at the local schools, I got a call from the principal:
Bob. The faculty loves them. They won’t wear anything else. They’re light, they can wear them all day long, they’re so easy to breathe through.”
I was convinced and bought more for the surrounding schools and local first responders. Since then I have joined Air Queen’s effort to make a substantial difference during the pandemic. Since ill-fitting cloth masks lose 60% of their protection, I wanted to buy the very best protection for my family, my son, his teachers and community and I want the very best for America and the world.
I believe a big part of beating COVID is in having the vast majority of the public wearing masks that really work! As a bottom line, the safest mask is the one you’ll wear and trust. You’ll wear a feather light mask with great ease of breathing and you’ll trust a mask the with FDA clearances and advanced testing that Air Queen has earned.
AirQueen USA is an authorized reseller of the Air Queen mask.
Masks Save Lives: Duke Study Confirms Which Ones Work Best
Physical distancing, face masks, and eye protection to prevent person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Q&A with Dr. Bob
Q: What is the best mask?
The best mask is FDA approved for use in surgery and protects you from 95% of particles. There are two. First the N95 NIOSH approved mask such as the 3M 8511 for healthcare providers only due to a worldwide shortage. Second, the N95 equivalent mask which provides the day long protection and is both lighter and more comfortable while providing 96.7% protection.
Q: How do masks compare?
The N95 is considered the gold standard. Why? It stops 95% of particles. A recent Lancet review show that the N95 offered 96% protection against the virus. However, these are difficult to wear for long periods of time and are reserved for medical personal. They must be individually fitted to work properly.
The Air Queen Nano mask has 96.7% protection against the virus, is lighter than a piece of paper and passes superior breathability tests. Since the nano mask is a N95 equivalent mask, it is available to the general public and is not taking the supply away from healthcare providers.
The surgical mask offers 67% protection if properly fit in the Lancet review.
Cloth masks offer less protection. If poorly fit with holes for air around the sides or top of the mask, the masks suffer a 60% decrease in effectiveness and may be especially poor for protection against airborne particles since the weave is too loose.
A Balaclava may separate the virus from the droplet. Thus if you are wearing a balaclava you may be expelling virus through the mask, potentially making this mask worse than no mask at all.
Q: How should my mask fit?
Wearing your mask correctly is key to protecting yourself. Here’s how:
- Covers both your nose and mouth. I see many people wearing a mask below the nose or above the chin where it is infective.
- Secure the mask at both the bridge of your nose and under your chin.
- The mask should be snug without impairing your ability to breath. When you breath in, the mask should draw snug against your face to optimally protect you from the virus.
- If the air queen mask doesn’t seal when you inhale, there are two options for improving the fit. First you may cinch the loop holes by tying a not in them to increase the tension. Second, you my use a mask extender that allows you to secure both straps around the back of your head.
Q: How should I handle my mask?
Remember that the mask is protecting you against virus which may accumulate on the outside of your mask. For this reason, never touch the front of your mask. When you take it off, don’t touch the mask itself, only the straps.
Q: The CDC recommends a cloth mask. Is that enough to protect me?
No. The CDC makes that recommendation because they want to preserve the supply of the far more effective surgical and N95 masks. The cloth mask can provide protection if properly fitted. But a loose fitting cloth mask can lose 60% of its protection. You’re far better off with surgical or N95 equivalent mask or a well-fitting multi ply cloth mask with three layers.
Q: When do I need to wear my mask?
Local ordinances may require you wear masks when out in public. To protect yourself the CDC recommends wearing a mask anytime you’re in public and where you can’t maintain social distancing. For instance, I don’t wear one biking or hiking where the is lot of open space. The key time when wearing a mask is vital to protecting yourself from the virus is indoors, especially in tight, closed spaces. Why? The virus may be airborne which means it may linger in the air and spread throughout the room. Even if it seems safe, it may not be. Other key places to wear a mask
- Places of religious workshop
- Planes, buses, trains, taxis, Ubers and subways
- Gas stations
Q: Does wearing a mask mean it’s safe to stand closer than 6 feet to someone else?
There’s simply no replacement for social distancing which may be the most effective measure to prevent infection. Your mask is no substitute of always remaining 6 to 10 feet away from other people. The mask just provides an extras level of protection. Don’t let a mask give you a false sense of security, especially in crowded indoor settings.
Q: What’s the right way to take my mask off?
Focus on just touching the strings. Start by removing your mask using the strings or bands that secure it behind your ears. Then fold the mask holding the two ear hooks. Clean and leave out to dry overnight. Now here is the most important piece. Avoid touching your face, especially parts that may lead to infection and that includes your eyes, nose and mouth. Immediately wash your hands with hand sanitizer. In this way, should there be any virus on your mask or face, you’re protecting yourself.
Q: What does it mean that Says Cov2 may be airborne?
The definition of an airborne virus is one that travels over time in space. That means that if a person is infected in a room, you could walk into a different part of the room and after that person has left and still be exposed to live, active, infective virus even if that person had no symptoms and did not cough or sneeze. Transmission among the Boston homeless, at weddings in churches in closed spaces may be more due to airborne. Only an N95 equivalent mask provides high level protection against airborne virus. Why? The droplets containing virus are large and drop quickly onto the floor or surrounding viruses. However airborne virus is much smaller and could penetrate a cloth mask. This means all closed indoor space are a potential threat.
Q: Will a mask provide absolute protection?
No. There is still a chance that you could breathe in virus. However, you’ll breath in a good deal less virus with a proper fitting N95 quality mask and that infection may be much less severe or even asymptomatic. However, in medical settings, even with procedures that aerosolize the virus, medical professionals can be completely protected by using a face shield, N95 mask another personal protective gear. Be sure to always wear eye protection with your mask since proper eye protection provides a 78% decrease in risk according to a Lancet review.