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First-of-Its-Kind Face Mask Provides Critical Layer of Protection Against the Flu


January 21, 2014 - Mundelein, IL

MUNDELEIN, IL--(Marketwired - January 21, 2014) - Each flu season, common practice for fighting the flu includes the flu shot and proper hand hygiene. Yet, statistics show, it's not enough. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this year's flu outbreak is now an epidemic and almost twice as many people between the ages of 18 and 64 are being hospitalized with flu-related symptoms this year compared to last year -- 61 percent versus 34 percent. And, it's hitting a younger, healthier age group than in previous years. 

Fortunately, there's a new way to protect against flu viruses -- the CURAD® Antiviral Face Mask. It's the only face mask that actually inactivates flu viruses on five minutes' contact, helping protect the wearer against flu viruses.

The CURAD Antiviral Face Mask is the first-ever antiviral medical face mask indicated to inactivate 99.99 percent of laboratory-tested flu viruses, including imminent pandemic and seasonal strains of influenza (flu) viruses, such as H1N1, this year's dominant flu strain in the United States, Avian flu, Swine flu and H3N2. Traditional face masks act only as a simple barrier or filter and do nothing to neutralize the harmful germs that remain active on the mask itself.

"Now, more than ever, people need to break their cold and flu routine and be even more vigilant against flu viruses. The CURAD Antiviral Face Mask is an easy, accessible and direct way to break the cycle and help stop the spread of germs," said Martie Moore, R.N., MAOM, CPHQ, chief nursing officer for Medline. "Taking care of a sick child or the elderly, hopping in an airplane or feeling vulnerable in public places are all examples of when wearing the CURAD Antiviral Face Mask can help protect you against the flu viruses you're bound to come in contact with."

One of the main benefits of the CURAD Antiviral Face Mask is that it can provide protection from cross-contamination. With conventional masks, the outer facing of the mask is frequently touched by the user, who then touches other things or people passing on the flu germs. Since the CURAD Antiviral Face Mask inactivates 99.99 percent of the tested flu viruses on five minutes' contact, the risk of spreading the flu virus is greatly reduced.

The CURAD Antiviral Face Mask works by incorporating proprietary technology that uses a combination of three natural and safe ingredients -- citric acid, zinc and copper. The outer white active layer absorbs infectious droplets and locks them inside, where they are inactivated by exposure to citric acid. The inner blue active layer contains copper and zinc ions that are toxic to pathogens. While simple, the innovative face mask can help protect against flu viruses and has been recognized as a major breakthrough in flu protection, winning the 2012 Chicago Innovation Awards.

So who should wear it and when?

The CDC recommends that doctors and hospitals provide their flu patients with face masks to help reduce influenza transmission, especially at-risk groups such as children, the elderly, pregnant women and people with compromised immunities. Family members of children with flu-like illnesses who used masks properly were 80 percent less likely to be diagnosed with the illness according to an article published in the International Journal of Infectious Disease.

"The CURAD Antiviral Face Mask should be one of the most important items in any home's medicine cabinet or traveling first aid kit right alongside hand antiseptics, adhesive bandages, alcohol pads, tape and exam gloves," said Moore.

The CURAD Antiviral Face Mask is available at most major retail and pharmacy chains throughout the country, including Walgreens, CVS, H.E.B., Target and Meijer. Find it in the first aid section. 

To learn more about the CURAD Antiviral Face Mask and other cold and flu tips, visit www.curad.com/flu-prevention.html

About Medline

As the nation's largest privately held manufacturer and distributor of health care products, Medline manufactures and distributes more than 350,000 products to hospitals, extended care facilities, surgery centers, physician offices, home care agencies and providers, and retailers. Named one of the country's "Best and Brightest Companies to Work For," Medline is headquartered in Mundelein, Ill. and has more than 1,100 dedicated sales representatives to support its broad product line and cost management services. For more information on Medline, go to www.medline.com or http://mkt.medline.com/clinical-blog/category/channels/social-channels/ to connect with Medline on a variety of social media channels.

The following files are available for download:

Vivika Panagiotakakos
(847) 643-3311
vpanagiotakakos@medline.com

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