Wednesday, January 19, 2022
California just distributed nearly 21 million N95 masks for schools. Here’s where they went
SACRAMENTO, Calif. —
Nearly 21 million high-quality N95 masks have gone out to county offices of education across California over the past 10 days and millions more kid-sized KN95 masks could be arriving as early as the end of this week, according to the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services.
Cal OES has partnered with the state’s Department of Education for the distribution and so far 51 of the state’s 58 counties have made the requests.
“The numbers sent out are a direct result of what county education departments asked for,” Cal OES spokesperson Brian Ferguson said.
The masks are BYD Care Model #DE2322, which fit adults and some high school and junior high school students, Ferguson said.
Sacramento County’s Office of Education received 62 pallets of N95s, about 950,000 respirators and have since distributed them, according to spokesperson Tim Herrera.
“Each district will pick up their allotment of masks – the number determined by the state – and then get them to the students, teachers, and staff in their districts with whatever process they decide,” he said.
Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised that people “wear the most protective mask you can that fits well and that you will wear consistently.”
N95 respirators that fit properly can filter up to 95% of particles in the air, but they have not been tested for broad use in children.
Ferguson said that “several million” more KN95 masks that are a better fit for kids are going out this week.
“These distributions are meant to supplement – not replace – the procurement and distribution of personal protective equipment to employees and students by local officials,” Ferguson said. “Unlike the beginning months of the pandemic, multiple varieties of masks are currently widely available for purchase on the open market and the federal government continues to reimburse local jurisdictions for 100% of the costs associated with such purchases.”
County offices of education are also able to request cleaning wipes and hand sanitizer. Overall, more than 1 billion units of personal protective equipment have been sent to counties, schools, medical facilities and local communities in California, according to Cal OES.
Ferguson said that even with the latest distribution “California still maintains a robust supply of hundreds of millions of pieces of PPE and other critical supplies that remain available to be rapidly deployed to communities in need.”
Here is a county-by-county breakdown of the recent N95 mask distribution for California schools since the New Year’s holiday.
Contra Costa: 675,840
Del Norte: 30,720
El Dorado: 122,880
Los Angeles: 5,468,160
San Bernardino: 1,551,360
San Diego: 1,920,000
San Francisco: 245,760
San Joaquin: 583,680
San Luis Obispo: 138,240
San Mateo: 368,640
Santa Clara: 998,400
Santa Cruz: 153,600
Source: KCRA News