I'm struggling to understand this, although I do realise that your mindset is widespread. Firstly, if there was no evidence that masks were effective, then they would not be used in clinical settings. There is such evidence. They are used. Therefore they are considered to be more effective than not wearing a mask. (Obviously, the usual caveats apply - they should be doffed and donned properly, and they should be constructed appropriately) Secondly, how are we protecting our frail and elderly? We are getting other people to go out and do their shopping and then delivering it to their doors. We are asking carers, volunteers and family members to shop and travel to and from work, and live their own lives, surrounded by members of the public and fellow professionals, and then visit the vulnerable, sometimes to drop off shopping or prescriptions, sometimes to help them far more intimately. If they wear masks while doing that (at all stages), the risk they are spreading the virus drops. Obviously, it doesn't drop by 100%. But I will take a 20% drop (or even a 5% drop), if it reduces the odds of my frail and vulnerable elderly relatives from contracting the virus. Or if it reduces the chance that Covid-19 sweeps through a care home. There is plenty of evidence that the majority of covid-19 infections are contracted by asymptomatic or presymptomatic spreaders. So that is the person in the queue next to you. The person on the checkout. The person filling shelves. A family member bringing it home with them from a shopping trip, or a day at work. https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe2009758 Masks help with preventing that in addition to social distancing and the correct use of hand washing and gloves. ed for typo.