Public not required to wear masks when country moves to Level 2 on Thursday

Masks will not be required to be worn by members of the public when the country moves to Level 2 on Thursday.

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The Director-General of Health today said it was not a requirement but people may wear them if they wish. Source: 1 NEWS

"For the general public, what I can say is we're neither recommending nor requiring masks," Dr Ashley Bloomfield, the Director-General of Health, said today in an announcement.

"However, if you do choose to use a mask, that's fine, and just make sure you know how to use it safely so you reduce the risk to yourself and others."

Dr Bloomfield added that it was "not a supply issue" but an issue of evidence.

"We will keep watching, but at the moment, we're not requiring or recommending that the general public use masks."

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Jacinda Ardern told media at the post-Cabinet press conference. Source: 1 NEWS

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern added that people should take precautions if they choose to wear masks, noting that surgical masks should be changed up to three times an hour.

"When you're changing it, you need to be very careful that you're not making any contact with the mask and ultimately, that you're not allowing it to become damp through the entire period you're wearing it," Ms Ardern said.

"Making sure that it's worn properly, I think, is one of the reasons evidence really can often fall on either side when you're asking those outside of the health profession to wear them."