Fear of Coronavirus Boosts the Price of Medical Masks in ChennaiVignesh Suppian (Author) Published Date : Mar 13, 2020 11:09 IST
Surgical mask prices have become 10 fold in Chennai because of Coronavirus fear:
Ordinary 2 ply masks that were sold for Rs. Three is now costing 30, and 3 ply that was sold for Rs. 6 is now 50 and the all-important N95 surgical mask from Rs. 100 is far more than Rs. 650 now. Though no one is affected in Chennai now or there are not many people using it in public; still, the prices are high.
Many small medical shops are out of stock of surgical masks. But it is readily available in big medical shops, but the costs are mind-boggling. A private channel telecasted the scarcity and price rise of these surgical masks, which showed the reality of the situation now.
An expert, when asked about the scarcity of surgical masks, said that only because of online bulk purchases is causing this artificial demand. Many book it online from the manufacture and sell it in foreign countries, where they get far better prices. The standard procedure of manufacturer sending to cost and freight and then to distributor to retailer and then to end-user is not happening now. But with online purchase and smuggling of surgical masks, this price rise has occurred.
But there is a question of how exactly these surgical masks could save from infection. Scientifically, many doctors from CDC have confirmed that even using surgical masks could cause the virus infection. It is because of touching the nose, eyes with infected hands will immediately affect even a healthy person. Surgical masks are only required for persons handling infected patients. Also, it can be used on infected persons to stop them from spreading it to the nearby persons.