Eat and drink with a mask

In full lockdown in May of last year, without leaving home and with restaurant closed but when the term “de-escalation», Bernardo Fernández, a nurse from Alicante who has been practicing since 1993, began to be interested in how to collaborate to make the opening of the hotel business more feasible avoiding the danger of contracting the virus.

“They could not open interiors, they talked about putting partition screens, and as I have a restless mind I thought that from the health sector we should contribute to provide some solution,” he explains to questions from this newspaper.

He got down to work and, as he himself says, “I was inspired, in quotes, to design some device that allows eating and drinking without removing the maskAnd that’s where the idea came from.


He confesses that he had to give the idea a lot of thought, because it had to be something that “allowed food and drink to be introduced without removing the mask, and at the same time avoiding the emission or reception of air particles, which are what generate the problem.”

So that the space available to insert the spoon or fork with the food had to remain closed most of the time“, Explain. Precisely one of the moments in which the risk of contagion is greatest is that of food in company, it abounds, because we speak without a mask and close to others.

In fact, among the expositions of the reasons that those responsible for the Generalitat have sent to the judges of the Supreme Court to request the reinforcement of the anticovid measures among society, it appears precisely as one of the most dangerous situations in indoor spaces, in which distance and mask cannot be guaranteed. This Health professional concludes that the definition of this situation is “when to eat, or when you are partying, but a celebration can be avoided and eating must be done every day,” he points out.

Bernardo Fernández has devised this mask to help solve the crisis in the hospitality sector


Control in this sense between cohabitants in a home is possible, but Bernardo Fernandez think about the serious problem that is generated to the economy of the hospitality and nightlife sector “with continuous closures and reduced capacity”. He admits that one of the sources of the spread of the virus may be there, but what he suggests is “a feasible solution.”

The process of investigation and innovation It is not exempt from ups and downs and the author of the revolutionary mask that allows drinking and eating without taking it off, and avoiding contagion, confesses that emotionally as soon as he saw a quick exit to his discovery, already started the de-escalation, how he collapsed because when he raised it he It made him see that people were already going out to eat and drink without the mask.

His argument, the capacity that is still reduced and that we have already reached a fifth wave. “Unfortunately more will come,” he adds, “and there will be areas of the planet where there will be more incidence of the virus and even new viruses transmitted by respiratory tract, as well as modifications.”

With the time it takes to develop the device, manufacture it and market it, for which he seeks investment, the author suggests that the next wave may not be arrived in time, but that the world situation suggests new episodes and the kit can help one of the worst hit sectors.

It consists of a face mask made of the same material as the FFP2 type, called “duckbill”, which creates a chamber between the mouth and the mask, the interior space of which is closed by a watertight plastic compartment. This compartment has two openings in turn, one at the front and the other at the back, and each of them has a gate that is alternately one open and the other closed by a manual mechanism.

“This guarantees the shortest period of time in contact with the outside air, and minimizes the risk of emission or reception of pathogenic substances contained in the air during the time of eating,” he explains.

The kit includes a set of plastic cutlery and utensils: spoon, fork and sippy straw, with a slight modification of the handle to fit into the compartment and bring the food to the mouth with the front door closed.

The innovation of this Alicante nurse has already passed all the national procedures required for the patent, and he has also started the application for the international patent, because he is convinced that “it can be a solution to a problem of global dimension generated by the pandemic of covid and other future situations ”.


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