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Northwest Siders Can Get Free KN95 Masks From Their Alderman’s Office

Studies found masks like N95s and KN95s are more effective at preventing COVID-19 infection than surgical masks.

A KN95 mask.
Chicago Public Schools
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DUNNING — Far Northwest Side residents who need a KN95 mask can stop by their local aldermanic offices while supplies last.

Alds. Samantha Nugent (39th), Jim Gardiner (45th), Nick Sposato (38th) and Anthony Napolitano (41st) have free masks available at their offices.

Marks are available on a first-come, first-served basis, with people able to get up to 10 per household. Masks cannot be reserved or put aside.

  • Nugent’s office is open 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday at 4200 W. Lawrence Ave.
  • Gardiner’s office is open 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Friday at 5425 W. Lawrence Ave.
  • Sposato’s office is open 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. weekdays at 3821 N. Harlem Ave. People need to bring proof of residency when picking up masks from the office, according to his newsletter.
  • Napolitano’s office, 7442 N. Harlem Ave., is also offering free hand sanitizer. Residents of the 41st Ward who are homebound but need free personal protective equipment can call his office at 773-631-2241.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced this week her office would provide 1.5 million masks to residents by funneling them through aldermanic offices and community groups.

Particle-filtering masks like N95s and KN95s are up to 75 times more effective at preventing COVID-19 infection than surgical masks, according to a study published in December in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 and Chicago’s positivity rate are at their highest point in months. There have been fewer hospitalizations and people dying from COVID-19 during this wave, but those figures also remain higher.

The city’s top doctor said this week it’s too soon to say whether the Omicron surge has reached its peak.

Block Club Chicago’s coronavirus coverage is free for all readers.

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