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News > Latin America

Ecuador Lifts Mandatory Use Of Masks

  • A mask thrown to the ground.

    A mask thrown to the ground. | Photo: Twitter/ @TVSdigital_

Published 29 April 2022

While epidemiological situation is stable in this Andean country, experts warned that the use of masks should be kept among people with risk factors.

On Thursday, President Guillermo Lasso's administration announced that the mandatory use of masks in open and closed spaces is no longer required in Ecuador.


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Experts warned that vulnerable people with poor health conditions should remain extremely cautious after masking is no more mandatory in Ecuador. Epidemiologist Alberto Narvaez said that COVID-19 vaccines are effective in protecting people from serious illness and death.

"The data we have shows that the seriously-ill people in intensive care are very few because there is already a fairly high third-dose vaccination coverage in people over 50 years of age, the ones who could die or get worse," said the doctor.

Noting that the COVID-19 pandemic in Ecuador has entered a new phase of stabilization thanks to the high vaccination coverage among the population, Narvaez estimated that Ecuador will enter an endemic phase in June.

Epidemiologist Daniel Simancas said that health situation is stable in the country right now. However, he warned that the use of masks should be kept among people with risk factors.

"People with chronic diseases, cancer, diabetes or a weakened immune system must be very vigilant... We cannot completely withdraw everything. It would be irresponsible," said Simancas, who is the director of the Center for Research in Public Health and Clinical Epidemiology of the Equinoctial Technological University.

Both experts called on the vulnerable people to continue wearing masks, especially when working or doing leisure activities. In addition, people should stay vigilant against new COVID-19 variants and ensure adequate ventilation at home and at social gatherings, they urged.

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