In light of the upcoming holiday season and the ongoing threat of COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses, the Massachusetts Coalition for Health Equity is advocating for hospitals and healthcare providers to reintroduce universal mask mandates. The coalition, which was established during the pandemic with the aim of protecting individuals who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19, hosted a virtual press conference on Monday to urge health systems to reconsider their masking policies.
Many hospitals had lifted their mask mandates after the public health emergency ended in May. However, with cases of COVID-19 on the rise once again, there is a growing concern that these policies could contribute to the spread of the virus and put vulnerable populations at risk. The coalition is calling on hospitals and healthcare providers to take proactive measures to protect their patients and staff by implementing universal mask mandates.
According to a report by the Boston Business Journal, many hospitals have already begun to reintroduce mask mandates in response to pressure from public health officials and concerns from patients and families. Some hospitals have also implemented more stringent testing protocols for employees and visitors. As the holiday season approaches, it is likely that we will see more cases of COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses. It is important that hospitals and healthcare providers do everything they can to protect their patients and staff during this time.