WASHINGTON - To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the U.S. Army is implementing Department of Defense guidance on the use of cloth face coverings. Soldiers, family members, Army civilian employees and contractors should follow Centers for Disease Control guidelines on the use of cloth face coverings in public settings or where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.Soldiers are authorized to wear the neck gaiter and other cloth items, such as bandanas and scarves, as face coverings. Soldiers should not, however, fashion face coverings from Army Combat Uniforms or other materials that have been chemically-treated. Personal protective equipment, such as N95 respirators or surgical masks, must be reserved for use in medical settings.Force health protection is the Army's top priority. Army senior leaders are urging everyone to adhere to the latest CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus, including practicing rigorous protocols for personal hygiene, staying home when sick and implementing social distancing techniques.