File photo: CGTN
HONG KONG, May 5 (Xinhua) -- The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government will distribute locally-invented washable face masks to residents for free to ease the shortage of protective gears in Hong Kong amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new mask, called "CU Mask," contains anti-bacteria copper elements and a replaceable filter in its 6-layer structure and can be used for 60 times, Secretary for Innovation and Technology of the HKSAR government Sit Wing-hang told a press conference on Tuesday.
Sit said the design of the mask, developed by the Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel, won the gold medal at the Geneva International Exhibition of Inventions.
Hong Kong residents can apply for the masks on the government website in about 30 days starting on Wednesday and the masks will be mailed to them.
To ensure children will have masks to wear when classes resumed, the government will also directly distribute masks to primary schools and kindergartens in the next one to two weeks, Sit said, adding that Hong Kong's 550,000 pupils will each get two masks.
Face masks will also be distributed to the elderly living in nursing homes, the disabled and homeless people.