Bill Gates: Aversion to coronavirus masks 'hard to understand'
Bill Gates on his 2015 ‘virus’ warning, efforts to fight coronavirus pandemic
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, chair and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, joins Chris Wallace on ‘Fox News Sunday.’
Microsoft founder Bill Gates said it is "hard to understand" some people's aversion to coronavirus masks.
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"Not wearing masks is hard to understand, because it's not that bothersome," Gates said Tuesday at Fast Company Impact Council's virtual annual meeting. "It's not expensive, and yet some people feel it's a sign of freedom or something, despite risk of infecting other people."
U.S. health officials continue to recommend face coverings as a way to slow the spread of COVID-19, along with social distancing and personal hygiene.
In the U.S., the topic of wearing masks has at times caused political debates about freedom and personal responsibility. In some Asian countries, however, masks are more widely accepted as something people wear when sick — even with an illness that is not COVID-19.
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Hong Kong, for example, has a population of 7.5 million people and is one of the most densely populated areas in the world, but the region has reported on six deaths due to COVID-19, which experts attribute to dedicated mask-wearing, according to The Wall Street Journal.