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If you have questions about the information posted below, send an email to the Comal County office of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service at or call (830) 620-3440. View the web site:

Community Service Opportunity

If you are watching the news, and who hasn’t been, you are aware of a national shortage of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), including face masks.  There have been many social media posts with patterns, instructions and videos on how to make face masks and some health care facilities are requesting them.  We have been asked by Extension leadership to lead an Extension response involving our volunteers - particularly TEEA members, 4-H members, 4-H Ambassadors, Healthy Texas Youth Ambassadors, Master Clothing Volunteers, and Master Wellness Volunteers.   
First, and most important, is to recognize that these face masks are in no way meant to replace N-95 respirators and other PPE.  We all recognize that fabric masks are no substitute!  These masks are meant to be used in situations that will free up N-95 respirators and other masks for higher priority uses.  The CDC guidelines on homemade masks state the following:

“(Health Care Professionals) HCP use of homemade masks:
In settings where facemasks are not available, HCP might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort. However, homemade masks are not considered PPE, since their capability to protect HCP is unknown. Caution should be exercised when considering this option. Homemade masks should ideally be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front (that extends to the chin or below) and sides of the face.”

Instructions:  Below you will find written instructions and pattern for making adult size face masks.  A video demonstration is available at  We ask that you use prewashed 100% cotton fabric (with or without a layer of fusible interfacing).  When possible, please use non-scented laundry detergent and no fabric softener when prewashing fabric. 

Distribution:  We have identified several options for distributing finished product.  Please use the following Google form when distributing completed masks

  1. We have been contacted by Dr. Tom Fisher, an oncologist with Texas Oncology, who is willing to accept ALL masks that we can produce.  There are 2 options for getting completed masks to Texas Oncology.  
    1. You can deliver the masks to one of their 210 Cancer Centers across the state.  To locate the nearest facility, go to, select the nearest city and hit Search.  Locations in that city will be provided.  Nurse Managers have been alerted that they may be contacted about delivering masks.  They can provide more specific instructions for delivery.
    1. If there is no site within a reasonable distance or you have no way to deliver the masks directly to a Cancer Center, you can ship all of your completed masks to the following central location and Texas Oncology will distribute them statewide.  Ship using FedEx and bill the Texas Oncology Fed Ex account 634235159. 
Ship to:
Lance Ortego
Director of Nursing Services
Texas Oncology
10408 Barbuda Trail
Keller, TX 76244

  1. Check with your local health care facilities to see if they will accept homemade masks.  This could include hospitals, clinics, cancer centers, medical offices, long term care facilities, etc.   You may want to meet any local needs rather than participate in Dr. Fisher’s challenge.
  1. JoAnn Fabrics is serving as a drop off point for completed masks.  You can drop off completed items at your local store.
Below is an example of a mask we made here in the office.