During an interview with ABC News on Thursday, Dr. Anthony Fauci said that wearing goggles can offer an additional layer of protection against the coronavirus.
Fauci’s suggestion was not an official recommendation, but the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, explained why eyes can also be responsible for coronavirus infections.
"You have mucosa in the nose, mucosa in the mouth, but you also have mucosa in the eye," Fauci said. "Theoretically, you should protect all the mucosal surfaces. So if you have goggles or an eye shield you should use it."
Fauci said his suggestion might become an official recommendation for the public at some point, much how like masks became an official recommendation in April. The CDC, however, has included eye protection in some of its sets of guidance for healthcare workers, depending on the circumstance.
Last month, the Lancet published a study funded by the World Health Organization that indicated that wearing eye protection decreases the risk of catching the virus. The study suggests that wearing eye protection resulted in a 78% reduction in infection; infection via the ocular route might occur by aerosol transmission or self-inoculation, the study said. This point was one the researchers had less confidence in, and further data is needed to draw a conclusion.