Use of masks declining: Govt

NEW DELHI, Dec 10: The Government today warned about the declining compliance to mask usage in the country amid concerns over the Omicron variant of the Coronavirus and urged people to follow COVID-Appropriate Behaviour and get vaccinated to prevent surge in cases.
Referring to an assessment by the Institute of Health Metrics, NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr V K Paul at a press conference said the usage of masks in the country has declined to pre-second wave levels and “in a way we have again entered a danger zone”.
The use of masks is declining, he pointed out, and said “from the point of view of protection capability, we are now operating at a low level…At a risky and unacceptable level”.
“We have to remember that both vaccines and masks are important,” Paul emphasised.
He said people must learn from the global situation.
Referring to a recent analysis by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Joint Secretary in the Union Health Ministry, Lav Agarwal, said the WHO has highlighted that Public Health and Social Measures (PHSM) compliance is declining with increase in vaccination rate.
“We need to diligently adhere to these public health measures in order to safeguard ourselves and those around us against COVID-19, the WHO has said,” he said.
He said citizens must strictly follow Covid-Appropriate Behaviour to prevent surge in cases as being seen in European countries.(PTI)