SPAIN has announced when it will lift a requirement to wear face masks in indoor settings except when on public transports on inside hospitals and care homes.
Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, said masks would no longer be required in most indoor places as of April 20 after the measure was approved on Wednesday in a meeting with regional health chiefs.
However she said it would still be advisable to wear a mask ‘when there are crowds of people’.
She said lifting the measure had been delayed until after Easter on the recommendation of health experts.
But for several regions, the lifting of the measure comes too late.
Madrid’s regional health secretary, Enrique Ruiz Escudero, responded to the news in a press conference by insisting that ‘it is not necessary to wait until after Easter’.
For weeks there has been speculation over when the mandatory use of masks would be lifted with Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez insisting in March that it wouldn’t be long to wait.
Compulsory face mask use is the last of the Covid-19 restrictions still in place across Spain, where the number of infections has steadily fallen since the Omicron peak in January.
Hospital admissions have also greatly reduced and Covid patients now account for only 3.5% of hospital occupation.
Spain is one of the last countries in Europe to still have such a measure in place.
It stopped mandatory mask use in outdoor settings in early February after reintroducing it in the run up to Christmas when Omicron was rampant.
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