A new study analyzed clinical trials of mask-wearing to prevent viral illness. It found that “wearing masks in the community probably makes little or no difference to the outcome of influenza‐like illness… compared to not wearing masks.”
The study analyzed randomized controlled trials investigating physical interventions such as mask-wearing, isolation and physical distancing. They found a “high risk of bias in the trials” and “variation in outcome measurement.” In fact, they did not find any conclusive evidence that masks reduce respiratory viral infection.
So why have governments pushed them so hard? Good question with no good answer.