Danish officials said Friday they were now recommending the use of face masks on public transport to curb the spread of COVID-19, just days after saying they did not “make sense in the current situation.”
The Danish Health Authority issued the recommendation while noting that “at the moment, the spread of the infection is at a low level in Denmark.”
The authority said that maintaining social distance and washing hands would continue to be important but as more people returned to public transport as society opened up, it “could make it harder to keep distance.”
“Therefore, we now recommend that you take a mouth cover with you in your bag in those situations, and put it on if it is difficult to keep your distance,” Soren Brostrom, director of the Danish Health Authority, said in a statement.
The new recommendation comes just a few days after Brostrom told broadcaster DR that masks “don’t make sense in the current situation, where we have a consistently very low level of infection.”
Brostrom did add that they were evaluating whether it could make sense in the long term, specifically pointing to public transport.
After the World Health Organization (WHO) changed its guidance, Danish health officials began cautiously recommending using masks in early July in a few specific cases—such as when going to the hospital for a test or when you are coming back from a risk area.
Denmark on Friday reported 69 confirmed new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total in the country, including Greenland and the Faroe Islands, to 14,028, with 615 deaths.
While the number of new cases are still at low levels, the country has seen an uptick over the last two weeks, according to WHO figures.
© 2020 AFP
Denmark recommends face masks on public transport (2020, July 31)
retrieved 1 August 2020
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