Nurse Designs Masks That Could Have Better Filtration Than N-95 Masks

We already consider doctors and nurses heroes who are fighting the good fight against COVID-19. They are literally risking their lives every day to save lives. Yet, one nurse has definitely gone way above and beyond.

When the CDC said that doctors and nurses should use bandanas and scarves as face coverings if they run out of medical grade masks,  Tommye Austin, senior vice president and chief nurse executive at University Health System in Austin, Texas, decided to create a face mask that was much more effective than your typical DIY face covering. She said, “I just want my staff to be safe and I want anyone who is taking care of these patients to be safe.”

Austin spent three weeks designing and creating face masks, and she came up with two very effective masks. They have been tested by the Southwest Research Institute, and both masks have been proven to be even more effective at filtration than N-95 masks. One mask has a 99.5% filtration efficiency, and the other mask has a 97.8% filtration efficiency. Not only that, but Austin says the masks are comfortable to wear.

Watch the video below to learn how she created these amazing face masks and how many she plans to make.

Super impressive, right? This is definitely what a real hero looks like.

Austin is very proud of the face masks she created, and she’s glad that she can make sure the doctors and nurses she works with will be protected when helping COVID-19 patients. In the video below, Austin shares even more details about these incredible face masks.


Our DIY t-shirt face masks aren’t looking so impressive right now, but they are probably sufficient for a run to the grocery store. However, if you would like to create face masks using Austin’s pattern, you can. University Health System has made the pattern and instructions available for download with the understanding that “it should only be used for non-commercial purposes, and we cannot guarantee that others using this design will have a mask as effective as the one created by Austin.”