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Patrick Dempsey Channels ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Character to Encourage Everyone to Wear Masks

What happened: Patrick Dempsey has channelled his “Grey’s Anatomy character,” Dr. Derek Shepherd, to send a message to his fans and followers.

“It’s a Beautiful Day to Save Lives,” he wrote on Instagram along with a close-up snap of himself wearing a black-and-white checkered mask. The phrase is one his character (affectionately known as McDreamy) would often say just before performing surgery on the long-running TV medical drama.

The 54-year-old actor added the hashtags “#WearAMask” and “#YourActionsSaveLives” along with the image. Dempsey is encouraging everyone to wear a mask to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.

We can make this go away! We are all in this together. We can do this people, but we have to be mindful and support each other. Wear a mask please. — Patrick Dempsey, Instagram

The Frontlines: Dempsey’s posts come as COVID-19 case numbers surge across much of the U.S.

Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), made another plea for Americans to “take the personal responsibility to slow the transmission of COVID-19 and embrace the universal use of face coverings.”

“Specifically, I’m addressing the younger members of our society, the millennials and the Generation Zs — I ask those that are listening to spread the word,” he said.

A Mighty Voice: Our contributor, Christie Sproba, who lives with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, shared why she believes everyone should wear a mask:

The simplest thing we can all do to protect others is to wear a mask… understand that many people are not afraid of getting infected and don’t see the point in wearing a mask. The point is that many people including you may be walking around with the virus, not know it, and spread it to others. So when you have been all over town not wearing a mask, not taking precautions, not concerned about others, you are putting me at risk.

You can submit your first person story, too.

From Our Community: 

Got My Cambridge Mask! Love it!

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A banner promoting The Mighty's new Navigating Coronavirus Together group on The Mighty mobile app. The banner reads, Want to connect with others who are managing their health during the pandemic? Join Navigating Coronavirus Together now. Click to join.

Other things to know: Because masks can likely to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the CDC recommends that people wear them in public settings and when around people outside of their household, especially when physical distancing (staying at least 6 feet away) is difficult.COVID-19 can be spread by people who do not have symptoms, which is why it’s important for everyone of all ages to wear masks (as well as practice social distancing).

How to take action: Dempsey is using his platform to spread information about the importance of mask-wearing by also sharing a video of Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

“Please, please listen to what he is saying. Take a few minutes to watch this and really pay attention,” Dempsey wrote.

In the video, Dr. Fauci explained COVID-19 is like no other infectious disease, as its symptoms can vary from no symptoms, to mild, moderate, and severe, to hospital visits, and even death. He also made a plea to younger people, who may be asymptomatic, to wear masks to help stop the spread.

“You have an individual responsibility to yourself, but you have a societal responsibility because if we want to end this outbreak, and then hopefully when the vaccine comes. … We’ve got to realize that we are part of the process.”

“We can be either part of the solution or part of the problem.”

Header image via Patrick Dempsey/Instagram