Well, almost everyone.

Courtesy of CNBC:

Global health and political leaders could have done many things better in confronting the coronavirus from the outset, philanthropist Bill Gates said, reflecting on the medical and societal response to the pandemic.

And a big one remains a topic of controversy more than eight months after the virus first appeared: the use of face masks.

“The number of things that in retrospect, could have been done better on this pandemic is very, very large,” the Microsoft co-founder said last week while discussing the latest release of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s annual Goalkeepers Report, which measures progress made toward the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals.

“Even the medical community are understanding of the importance of masks. You know, it took us several months — most respiratory diseases are coughing diseases. They’re not talking or singing diseases. And so we got that one wrong. We underestimated the value of masks.”

Mask wearing is now mandatory in a number of countries, cities, businesses and public venues. But medical guidance was conflicted early on, with health authorities initially advising against wearing masks, questioning their efficacy and urging the public to leave them for front-line workers amid a supply shortage. Now, inconsistent mask rules in states and cities and the refusal by large numbers of people, particularly in the U.S., to wear them is contributing to the continued coronavirus spread, many medical professionals say.

I keep hearing Trump attacking Dr. Fauci for not recommending mask-wearing at the very beginning of the pandemic, but the fact is that Dr. Fauci’s thinking was right in line with almost every other medical professionals.  

You might remember that the thinking at the time was that masks would not necessarily keep you safe and that if the public started buying all of them up that there would not be enough to the medical community. 

Not to toot my own horn, but I was fairly early in urging people to wear masks because to me it simply made sense that if everybody was masked up that there would be fewer particles in the air and a barrier protecting people from breathing those that were. 

Having patted myself on the back I must confess that the first masks that I ordered were found to be highly ineffective and it took me months to finally get a few good ones that would actually keep me safe about 99% of the time. (P.S. Here is a link to help you find the best ones as well. Link)

At this point, I hope you have several good masks at your disposal and that you are wearing them whenever you are someplace where you might be exposed. 

I have every confidence that we will all get through this if we just pay attention to new facts and learn as we go along.