The Department Of Trade And Industry Issues Advisory On Sellers Jacking Up Prices Of N95 Masks

N95 masks have reportedly been selling for as high as P200!
PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO/CHATCHAI TAWEERAT

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has issued an advisory on the price surge of N95 masks in the wake of the sudden explosion of the Taal Volcano on January 12.

In the advisory, the DTI said that several retailers have jacked up the prices of N95 masks as well as gas masks. The government agency said that it has dispatched teams to monitor and observe the movement of retail prices in the market.

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“DTI will not hesitate to file administrative and criminal charges against unscrupulous business entities and individuals who capitalize on the consumers’ urgent need for their own profit,” the advisory reads.

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According to a report from Inquirer.net, the prices of N95 masks have soared to P200 from the usual P25 to P30.

In addition, the Manila Bulletin reported that the supply of N95 and gas masks are now running low in several stores. The report added that some people have been buying these masks in bulk.

One Twitter user said, “A Facebook friend reported that she saw a woman buying 10 boxes of N95 masks for her family of four—that’s 1,200 masks! And N95s are REUSABLE!”

The Department of Health (DOH) has warned the public on the dangers of ashfall inhalation, in particular, its effects on the respiratory system:

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Inhaling these fine particles of ash can harm the respiratory system. One of the tips that the government agency has given is to wear an N95 mask to avoid inhalation of microscopic particles of ash. An N95 mask helps to filter out at least 95 percent of airborne particles and it is designed to fit the face better compared to regular masks. 

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