Thursday 30 November 2023

Facemasks are back. Health orders mandatory use in schools and public transport

Measure due to the health alert for acute and serious respiratory infections in children

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QCOSTARICA – The mandatory use of the facemask on public transport, such as buses, taxis, trains, ferries, and in schools, starting Monday, October 17 and through October 31.

Image for illustrative purposes

This is part of the measures due to the health alert for acute and serious respiratory infections in children, a situation that has overwhelmed the Hospital Nacional de Niños (HNN) (HNN) – Children’s national hospital.

This coincides with the reopening of all public and private schools on Monday, October 17, after a week of ‘rainy recess’.

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The circular indicates “Technical Committee determined the need to reinforce measures for the containment of circulating respiratory viruses. The use of a mask aims to prevent the spread of viruses and avoid saturation at the National Children’s Hospital to protect the lives of minors.”

The health order (document DM-RM-6661-2022) establishes the mandatory use of the mask in educational centers and public transport for a period of two weeks

Regarding the use of a mandatory mask during the period from October 17 to 31, 2022, it is established:

  • a) Public and private educational centers, Education and Nutrition Centers and Children’s Comprehensive Care Centers: use of a mandatory mask in the student population (over 5 years of age) and workers of these centers.
  • b) Public land transport and ferries: mandatory use of a mask for the entire user population of these services.
  • c) School transport: mandatory use of a mask by personnel providing the service and by the user school population.
  • d) The Public Transport Council and INCOFER (national railway) are urged to verify that the mandatory mask measure is complied with.
  • e) In children aged 2 to 5 years, the use of a mask is recommended, but it is not mandatory due to the state of development of the years.
  • f) The use of a mask is not recommended for children under the age of 2.

Enclosed spaces

The Ministry of Health also asks to promote the use of masks in closed spaces, especially in the population with risk factors, regardless of their age.

In these closed sites the use of these implements is a recommendation and not mandatory.

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