Face masks that can protect wearers from illnesses like coronavirus are still available online, but the U.S. Surgeon General is asking the American public to hold off on clicking "add to cart."
Health care workers need them before the general public, according to the office of Dr. Jerome M. Adams.
"Seriously people- STOP BUYING MASKS!" the Surgeon General's official Twitter account posted on Saturday. "They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can't get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!"
The Surgeon General instead reminded Americans to wash their hands and stay home while sick.
Ecommerce giant Amazon still has a wide offering of face masks and hand sanitizer. So does eBay. However, searching for "surgical face masks" on Walgreens' website pulls up only items that are out of stock online.
Amazon warned sellers on its platform not to inflate face mask prices amid global concerns about coronavirus, according to emails obtained by Wired.
Hospitals around the world are facing a shortage of masks and other supplies as producers face increasing demand. Ninety-six percent of local U.S. pharmacies said they were selling masks faster than they could replace them, according to a survey published Feb. 6 by The National Community Pharmacists Association.
The U.S. does not have enough facemasks or ventilators stockpiled to deal with threats of coronavirus spreading, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told a Senate subcommittee on Tuesday.
Industrial giants Honeywell and 3M said in January that they would ramp up production of protective facial masks amid a shortage as the deadly coronavirus spreads.
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FOX Business' inquiry to Walgreens was not immediately returned.
FOX Business' Audrey Conklin contributed to this report.