Covid restrictions in Quebec will be relaxed, but when will the masks be allowed to come off?
On Thursday, April 28, Provincial Chief Medical Officer Luc Boileau spoke to reporters about the sixth wave of COVID-19 and the lifting of some restrictions.
Dr. Boileau, who is temporarily in charge of health care Québec, assumes that it will be possible to be indoors without a mask as early as May 14. But that's not yet certain. According to Boileau, a final decision can be made early next week when more information is gathered. The doctor also noted: even when masks will be officially abolished, it will be necessary to continue wearing them in health care facilities and public transport for some time.
If wearing masks ceases to be mandatory on May 14, it will be the end of all covid restrictions for those who are not infected with the coronavirus. But everything will remain the same for infected people, since the virus is still dangerous, doctors say.
"It should become something of a normal reflex: you have symptoms, you stay home," said Dr. Longtin, who also participated in the press conference.
Longtin considers mask-wearing essential for certain stages of coronavirus development because it can minimize the number of severe cases, hospitalizations and fatalities. At the same time, Dr. Boileau states that Quebec is unlikely to return to a mandatory mask regime in the future. He hopes for conscious people to use masks themselves when necessary. Boileau is sure that even after the abolition of compulsory masks, many people will continue to wear them of their own free will.
The provincial chief medical officer stated that the peak of the sixth wave of the coronavirus in Quebec is over. Nevertheless, Quebecers should be wary of the new strain of the virus, which is highly contagious. Cases of reinfection are on the rise, causing provincial authorities to recommend testing for COVID-19 for any suspicious symptoms, even if you only had the disease two months ago. Previously, you had to do it when you showed signs of infection and 3 months or more have passed since the illness.
"The activity of the virus is still high ... We still see thousands and thousands of people getting sick every day," Dr. Boileau reported.
Although restrictions may soon be lifted, the provincial chief medical officer warns: it is too early to celebrate victory over COVID-19.
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