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Regional News

How Many Spokanites Wear Masks? Health Officials Do A Survey

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Missy Nadvornick
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Spokane County Health Officer Bob Lutz is looking for 80% of county residents to wear masks as they’re out and about. That, he says, is the minimum needed to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Right now, his rough guess is that about 65% of people are masking up.

To determine that figure, Lutz told reporters the health district borrowed an idea from the Yakima health district. Last weekend, it asked college students, to do an informal survey.

"We had volunteers anywhere from up north out to Liberty Lake, as far west as Cheney and throughout Spokane, the city of, and Spokane Valley," he said.

Lutz says they counted 750 people and how many of them were wearing masks. As it turns out, almost two-thirds.

“We’ll be doing this on a weekly basis. It’s a snapshot. It’s by no means a very rigorous study, but again, it’s a good observational way to get a sense of what people are doing," Lutz said. "We’re picking different venues, so we went to retail, to grocery stores, places like that.”

Washington is requiring businesses to ensure that customers are wearing masks before serving them.