The United Kingdom has witnessed the lifting of almost all mask mandates, thereby allowing people to choose whether or not to cover their faces in community settings. Largely as a result of this welcome removal of coercive legislation, there has been a marked visible reduction in the prevalence of face coverings in retail settings, hospitality venues and on public transport. The prominent exceptions to this return to a mask-free society are NHS facilities and venues allied to health, with widespread masking of both staff and patrons persisting in all hospitals, health centres and GP practices, and most dentists, opticians and pharmacies. When asked to justify their ongoing ‘requirement’ for face coverings, a common response is that they are following NHS protocols to keep people safe.
We believe that healthcare’s insistence that staff and visitors continue to wear masks is both irrational and to the detriment of the people who use these services. In collaboration with the Smile Free campaign (smilefree.org), I have written an open letter (see link below) to NHS chief executives demanding immediate removal of the mask requirement. Irrespective of whether your are a healthcare professional, scientist or a member of the general public, please support our campaign by:
Clicking on the link below and adding your name to our open letter;
Joining our Smile Free group to continue to campaign against future mask mandates.
Thank you in anticipation of your support.
Photo courtesy of National Cancer Institute at Unsplash