Ontario officials "strongly" recommend masking
DAN CEARNS, The Standard
NORTH DURHAM/KAWARTHA: With Influenza, Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and COVID-19 driving a large number of infections in children across Ontario, Ontario government officials are strongly recommending masking.
At a press conference on Monday, November 14th, Ontario Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore talked about the current state of virus transmission in the province.
"The ongoing circulation of COVID-19 in our communities in conjunction with the earlier than normal rise in Influenza and Respiratory Syncytial Virus is a situation not seen before but is being experienced across the Western Hemisphere," Dr. Moore explained. "What we are facing is a triple threat which requires collective action. An action to protect the most vulnerable in our communities, the very young, the very old and those with underlying medical issues. And to ensure our healthcare system remains able to care for Ontarians when they need it, I am reminding Ontarians to get back to using all of the layers of protection which we know work to keep ourselves and others healthy."
Those layers of protection included screening daily for signs of illness and having people stay home when they are sick, practicing good hand hygiene, cleaning high-touch surfaces and staying up to date with vaccines.
He specifically highlighted masking as a key measure to keep Ontarians safe.
"I am strongly recommending all Ontarians, not just those at high risk, wear a mask in indoor public settings, especially around our most vulnerable Ontarians. I'm also recommending, if possible, children between two and five [years of age] wear a mask with supervision if they can tolerate the mask and safely put it on and off," Dr. Moore stated.
However, he noted this is a recommendation, and the province is not implementing mandatory masking at this time.
At a press conference on Sunday, November 13th, Premier Doug Ford provided his suggestions to Ontarians.
“Wear a mask every time possible. Number two, get a vaccination shot if you haven't already received yours. And number three, get a flu shot. Those are the recommendations I have.”