By: Zina Abdulrahman, Arts and Entertainment editor, The Pawprint
The Ministry of Health and Prevention and the National Emergency and Crisis Management Authority (NCEMA) have allowed the removal of facemask in some places while adhering to the rule of maintaining a distance of two metres. Residents can now remove masks in exercise areas, on the beach, in open areas of swimming pools, in vehicles if they are riding family members, if they are sitting alone in a closed room, going for personal grooming services at the salon or at medical centres to avail treatment or diagnostic screening.
Initially, in the first three or four months of the pandemic (January to May 2020), the World Health Organisation (WHO) stated there was no need for facial masks. Later, it became evident that droplets of moisture and saliva carried the virus some distance and poor ventilation too played a role in the spread of the disease. By June 2020, the WHO mandated the wearing of a facial mask by one and all and issued an advisory stating that face masks had an important role to play in curbing the transmission of COVID-19.
Since the rate of infection is measured now, UAE residents feel relieved that they can take off their masks in some controlled situations.