Mandatory facemasks reinstated in València hospital amid COVID surge

by Lorraine Williamson
mandatory facemasks

VALENCIA – In light of a significant rise in COVID-19 admissions and an uptick in infections among its staff, the Hospital Doctor Peset in València has reinstated the mandatory wearing of facemasks.  

The directive comes directly from the regional Ministry of Health of the Generalitat and encompasses all patient-admitted rooms and emergency departments within the facility, including waiting areas. 

Mandatory facemasks for the time being

The hospital’s decision was prompted by findings from the Preventive Medicine and Occupational Risks departments. Furthermore, the mask mandate will remain in effect until deemed unnecessary by these services. 

Surge in Cases 

While the Ministry hasn’t released specific figures regarding hospital infections, recent data from the Valencia region indicates a concerning trend. New cases surged to 3,220 between July 28 and August 11. This is in sharp contrast to the slightly over 1,500 reported in the preceding fortnight. 

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A proactive precaution 

Health officials stress that the mask mandate is a provisional protocol. Once conditions stabilise, the hospital will revert to the overarching guidance from the Ministry of Health. This currently only advocates for mask usage in high-risk situations or for particularly vulnerable patients. 

The Hospital Doctor Peset’s decision aligns with the recommendations set out in the Orden SND/726/2023 from July 4. Though this directive from the Council of Ministers announced the end of the COVID-19 health crisis and lifted the universal mask requirement in hospitals, it also advised enhanced precautions for symptomatic individuals in communal areas. 

As of now, the hospital has distributed dozens of masks to uninformed visitors and patient companions who were caught off guard by the renewed regulation. 

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