The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a new study that found a link between mask mandates and decreased COVID-19 cases and deaths.
According to the study, which compared data in counties where states require masks between last March and December, the spread of the virus slowed when local governments implemented mask mandates within 20 days of implementation.
COVID-19 death rates decreased by 1.9% points 100 days after the mandates were implemented, the study found.
The research found a significant link to the increase of COVID-19 cases and deaths and on-site dining at restaurants allowed by local governments for more than 40 days.
"Allowing on-premises restaurant dining was associated with an increase in daily COVID-19 case growth rates 41–100 days after implementation and an increase in daily death growth rates 61–100 days after implementation," researchers said. "Mask mandates and restricting any on-premises dining at restaurants can help limit community transmission of COVID-19 and reduce case and death growth rates. These findings can inform public policies to reduce community spread of COVID-19."
According to the research, dining at restaurants was linked to a 1.1% increase in the case growth rate 81-100 days later.
The study did not differentiate between indoor and outdoor dining.