- The public health director states the decision is due to growing COVID cases and hospitalizations.
- Quebec’s interim public health director Dr. Luc Boileau said the upsurge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations drove him to maintain the measure.
Quebec is extending the region’s mask order in indoor public spaces till at least April 30, the province’s top doctor declared Tuesday.
Interim public health director Dr. Luc Boileau described the decision at a press conference Tuesday, saying the surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations amid the region’s sixth wave provoked him to maintain the measure — only ten days before it was predicted to be dropped.
“The virus is still spreading considerably,” Boileau said. “We select to have a more careful approach, and it’s liable to do this.”
He said the measure will be held for the following two weeks and regularly re-evaluated by public health officials.
“Our purpose is not to keep [masks] forever,” he said.
Speaking to journalists Monday, Premier François Legault had hinted that the region was leaning toward extending the measure beyond the scheduled date of April 15 but said to not anticipate any new rules in the face of the sixth wave.
“Fortunately, numerous people have their three vaccines, so the effect so far is that we don’t wish to have to add new measures,” he said.
According to recent forecasts from Quebec’s provincial health institute (INESSS), the region is expected to see a peak in both diseases and hospitalizations over the next few weeks. Boileau estimates that the highly infectious Omicron subvariant, BA.2, accounts for 75 percent of new cases.
The decision on masking comes as the region recorded 72 more hospitalizations and 31 demises Tuesday. “The outbreak is not over,” said Boileau.
He reminded Quebecers who test positive for the virus to quarantine for the first five days and then stay alert for the following five.
Source – cbc.ca