Staff from the WHO Collaborating Centre for Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Control at the School of Public Health at The University of Hong Kong contributed to a published article on the efficacy of face masks for seasonal human coronaviruses, influenza viruses and rhinoviruses.

[ABSTRACT] We identified seasonal human coronaviruses, influenza viruses and rhinoviruses in exhaled breath and coughs of children and adults with acute respiratory illness. Surgical face masks significantly reduced detection of influenza virus RNA in respiratory droplets and coronavirus RNA in aerosols, with a trend toward reduced detection of coronavirus RNA in respiratory droplets. Our results indicate that surgical face masks could prevent transmission of human coronaviruses and influenza viruses from symptomatic individuals.