Canadians should wear masks to protect others when in public: Tam

23 Mai, 2020, 00:31 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Coronavirus outbreak: Trudeau, health officials on new recommendations for wearing non-medical masks

Dr. Theresa Tam, the chief public health officer for Canada, said Wednesday the recommendation comes as stay-at-home orders are lifting in different provinces and more people are going outside, riding public transit, or visiting stores.

"For the spring and summer months, strict adherence to the public health basics of physical distancing, handwashing and cough etiquette must continue as the bare minimum", she said.

Health officials at all levels say the mask doesn't prevent you from getting COVID-19, but it will protect others from you, if you're an asymptomatic carrier. "And staying home when sick is a must, always and everywhere".

One such province, New Brunswick, moved into the next phase of its economic revival on Friday by allowing hair stylists, tattoo parlours and other "close-contact" businesses to reopen their doors.

However, since that time, many provinces have taken steps to restart their economies, with Ontario on Tuesday permitting the opening of many retailers, though with physical distancing measures in place. It's now looking at helping the private sector "get the equipment that they need and ensuring, of course, all the while that we're protecting the needs of our front-line workers".

Dr. Tam said the previous language surrounding non-medical mask use was more "permissive". "Thinking of it as I am protecting you and you are protecting me". That understanding has changed, as it is now known people without symptoms can transmit the virus to others.

Foran said people with severe allergies might also find wearing a mask hard at this time of year.

Have you been wearing a mask at work or when running errands?

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The advice is slightly stronger than the suggestions over the last couple of weeks that people should consider wearing a face mask in public. File photo: Getty Images.

"That's my personal choice".

"I think we all need to adjust to what works in our circumstances and keep safety at the forefront of what we're doing", he said.

He was first seen wearing a mask in public during a May 6 Canadian Armed Forces repatriation ceremony.

Nanaimo's Dr. David Forrest, who specializes in infectious diseases and critical care, said countries where public mask usage has been mandated have been successful in controlling the spread of COVID-19.

"If done properly, tracing applications can achieve both privacy and public health goals at the same time".

Responding to the need to increase the capacity to trace any possible contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the federal government will soon be "strongly recommending" Canadians download a to-be-determined monitoring and exposure notification app.

During his Friday morning address outlining the latest federal pandemic measures, Trudeau said that the federal government has trained federal employees who can make 3,600 contact tracing calls a day, and in addition, Statistics Canada has trained another 1,700 interviewers who can make up to 20,000 calls a day. More than 50 countries have now made wearing one mandatory, including the Czech Republic, Venezuela and Spain, which enacted such a rule just this week.

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