The Costa Rican Ministry of Health announced that it is now suspending the school recess and establishing the mandatory use of masks in schools and public transportation for two weeks.
According to the resolution, the Technical Committee determined the need to reinforce measures for the containment of circulating respiratory viruses.
“The use of masks is aimed at preventing the spread of viruses and avoiding overcrowding at the National Children’s Hospital to protect minors’ lives, ” the Ministry of Health in a press release.
Additionally, it indicated that the decision is based on the technical recommendations of the institutional, technical group on respiratory diseases.
The Minister of Health explained that “during the last two years, school children have not been exposed to viruses, bacteria, and other agents that strengthen the immune system, which causes these infections to be even more serious.”
Regarding the mandatory use of masks from October 17 to 31, 2022, the Ministry of Health established several guidelines.
In public and private educational centers, Education and Nutrition Centers, and Comprehensive Care Centers for Children, masks are mandatory for students (over five years old) and workers.
Likewise, in public transportation and ferries, face masks are obligatory. The mandate also applies to school transport for both users and service providers.
The Public Transportation Council and INCOFER are urged to verify that the mandatory facemask measure is enforced.
“As a sector, we are respectful of the decisions issued by the Ministry of Health, so starting next Monday, to use public transportation, the use of masks will be verified in advance,” said Silvia Bolaños, Executive Director of CANATRANS.
In children between 2 and 5 years old, masks are recommended, but they are not required. The Ministry does not recommend using masks for children under two years of age.
On the other hand, the National Children’s Hospital urged parents to prevent respiratory virus contagion as babies are severely affected.