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Fewer respiratory masks on some Norfolk pharmacy shelves

The coronavirus and flu could be to blame for fewer masks on store shelves.

NORFOLK, Va. — Inside of Nofolk's MacArthur Pharmacy, only a couple of surgical masks remain. 

"We got these masks over here, they're selling for a dollar. They're going like crazy," said pharmacy technician Isaiah Winstead.

Coronavirus concerns and fears about the flu continue to swirl across Hampton Roads.

"They are usually right here, but they're all out and we can't even get any from our supplier right now. They're all out," said Winstead.

Down the street, another pharmacy's supply was wiped out and then brought back by a man who wanted to take them to China.

Pharmacies and hardware stores both carry masks. Some are for construction and others can be used to protect against some bacteria.

Retired registered nurse Helen Malpaya explained one of the best masks to get is the N95 respirator mask. 

"It actually protects you from airborne viruses -- droplet precaution. We use it in the hospital," said Malpaya.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guide agrees with Malpaya. According to the CDC, the N95 filters out at least 95 percent of airborne particles.

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