SO, it looks like we should get used to wearing face masks! As just as they are obligatory to wear in Spain during the current State of Alarm measures, they look to play a major part in the forthcoming ‘new normality.’
The Council of Ministers approved this Tuesday the decree of measures for the new normality. In other words, the norms related to the pandemic that will govern while Spain lives with Covid-19. In principle, this period will last until there is a vaccine or an effective treatment against SARS-CoV-2.
Face masks will be mandatory and the communities must be prepared for another outbreak. However, there will be no movement restriction or limit of people who can meet.
Health Minister Salvador Illa has repeated that residents must “learn to live with the virus.” This new stage will begin when the State of Alarm ends on June 21. This decree of “urgent measures of prevention, containment and control” will last until the government considers, after consultation with the autonomous communities and a report from the Centro de Emergencias Sanitarias, to decree that the health emergency has ended.
Government spokeswoman María Jesús Montero has insisted on “a message of prudence and caution. Without vaccination or treatment, the virus remains a threat. We cannot think that the danger has passed.”
The overall goal is that infections will not skyrocket until medicines are available to control the disease, either by providing generalised immunity or by curing it.
All this while trying to recover the economic and social activity of the country.
The control of the Covid-19 will rest, in this new normality, on prevention. “Individual responsibility will be key,” said Salvador Illa. Hence rules such as the use of face masks when it is not possible to maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres with other people in public or private places and the repetitive insistence to take care of “hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette” in addition to “common sense,” which is regularly reiterated by the director of the Centro de Emergencias Sanitaria, Fernando Simón.
Even without restrictions on mobility, those responsible for public transport must take measures to avoid crowds of passengers. Operators will have to keep the passenger record for four weeks when they have an assigned seat for possible contagion traces.
In the same way, “all the measures that were already in force in work centres, health centres, shopping centres … are contemplated,” stressed the Minister of Health. Thus, in companies, it will have to be ensured that the distance between workers can be kept and accesses organised so that there are no concentrations when entering or leaving.
Now that the proposal has been approved it will be published on Wednesday, June 10, in the BOE with full details.