TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Masks will not be required at pharmacies and a list of institutions starting Tuesday (Aug. 15) as Taiwan further relaxes measures against COVID-19.
The mask rule has been lifted for certain medical institutions, but visitors are still advised to wear a mask. These include pharmacies, medical laboratories, physical therapy clinics, radiology service providers, occupational therapy clinics, midwife clinics, mental health rehab centers, home care and respiratory care facilities, and blood donation centers.
Masks are now only mandatory at hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, long-term care, and other senior welfare facilities. Exceptions are allowed at these places for dining and treatment purposes, said the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control announced on Monday (Aug. 14).
Still, the public is advised to be masked when they have a fever or respiratory symptoms or are in places that are crowded or with poor ventilation. Masks are also recommended for the elderly and people with compromised immunity, for example, those not fully vaccinated, the CDC said.
Countries around the world have been easing COVID rules after the pandemic broke out three years ago. Nevertheless, the World Health Organization (WHO) has classified a new strain called EG.5, or Eris, as a “variant of interest,” which can be more severe or contagious.