By Joan Murray

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – With COVID cases at an all-time high, medical experts say it is time to upgrade your mask.

N95 masks used mainly in healthcare settings and KN95 masks which you see for sale online are considered the gold standard because they filter out 95 percent of particles.“

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“They are recommended by the CDC to keep you safer,” said Judy Goldberg who is wearing a KN95 mask for protection.

Goldberg and her friend Sharon Mehlman believe they are safer with the N95 masks. “It fits more snugly around the face with fewer openings,” said Goldberg.

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In general, N95 refers to masks meeting a US standard while KN95 refers to masks meeting a Chinese standard although both are designed to do the same filtering job.

There are a lot of counterfeit N95 masks on the market and the CDC has published some things to look for when buying an N95 mask. Fake masks won’t have markings, sometimes have misspellings and no approval number or NIOSH marking.

NIOSH stands for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

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”I look at a box to see where it was made.  If you are buying at a big box store you can assume that they’ve done their due diligence” says NSU professor Dr. Aarti Raja.