SLC Dept. of Health: NYS drops masking requirements in health care facilities

News release

CANTON, NY — As of February 12th, New York State officials made the decision to end COVID-19 masking requirements in health care facilities. New York State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald stated that a steady drop in COVID-19 cases and deaths in recent months justifies this action.

The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) is asking health care facilities to follow CDC guidelines and come up with their own plan for when masking may be required for staff, patients, or visitors. New York adult care facilities are recommended to follow CDC’s community guidance and guidance for congregate living settings. Facilities and programs operating under the authority of another State agency will follow the masking requirements of that agency. Keep in mind during this transition individual hospitals and facilities could enact their own masking policies.

McDonald emphasized the pandemic is not over and that we are in a period of transition. During this time, New Yorkers have the information and tools they need to protect themselves.

Understanding the risk of COVID-19 for yourself and those around you can help you make informed decisions to keep you safe and healthy.

Although the masking mandates have been dropped, continue to do what makes you feel comfortable when it comes to wearing a mask. If you are symptomatic, it is still strongly encouraged to wear a mask around other individuals. Masking is still recommended if you have tested positive for COVID-19 and are on days 6-10 of your isolation period and not in isolation at home.