Feb 17, 2021 - Health

The government has seized 10 million fake N95 masks

Employees work as they make real respiratory masks in a family-owned medical equipment factory. Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. government has seized approximately 10 million counterfeit N95 masks designed to mimic those produced by global manufacturer 3M, AP reports.

Why it matters: The fake masks do not have the same standard of protection as actual N95 masks, which are needed for healthcare workers and others on the front lines of caring for others during the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Federal investigators have warned roughly 6,000 potential victims across 12 states, including hospitals and medical facilities, to stop using the fake masks.
  • The 10 million masks were seized over the past several weeks, per AP. Masks were seized in 5 different states over the past 2 weeks.
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