4 Jun, 2023 @ 09:11
1 min read

MASKS OFF: No visitors will have to wear masks at Gibraltar’s hospital from Monday, health chiefs reveal

Spain's Cabinet approves end of indoor mask wearing this Wednesday but with key exceptions
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MASK rules will be closer to pre-pandemic from Monday than at any time since COVID-19 first broke out in Gibraltar, health authorities announced.

From June 5, all healthcare professionals, staff, patients and visitors will no longer be required to wear masks in all areas of St Bernard’s Hospital, the Gibraltar Health Authority (GHA) said.

It added that masks will only be required in ‘specific situations’ like when caring for patients with breathing problems.

The change comes after health chiefs consulted experts and found there was very little risk to patients at this point.

GHA chiefs also looked at UK guidelines to make the decision.

Staff, patients and visitors can still use a mask if they want.

They will be available at the entrance to the hospital.

“Patients may also request that staff wear a mask and the GHA view is that the choice of the individual should be respected in this regard,” the GHA added.

Despite the further relaxing of mask rules, the GHA encouraged the community ‘to practice good respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette’ even if people are vaccinated.

GHA Director General Professor Patrick Geoghegan said this move was only possible thanks to the team effort during the pandemic.

“The de-escalation of mask use within the GHA is a testament to the collective efforts of our healthcare community, the commitment of our staff and the resilience of our patients.

“While we celebrate this milestone, we remain vigilant in our commitment to infection prevention and control.”

He said the GHA would ‘closely monitor’ any emerging viral threats and adapt to any changes.

“Patient and staff safety remain our top priority,” he concluded.

“The GHA is proud to have served our community throughout these challenging times and we look forward to continuing to provide exceptional care while navigating the path to recovery together.”

At the last count, 113 people had died from COVID-19 in Gibraltar, with over 40,000 including frontier workers getting three vaccinations.


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