Panaji: Even as Goa is expected to be declared as a mask-free state, a member of the state government’s expert committee on Covid management Dr. Shekhar Salkar on Friday said that those with serious illnesses and senior citizens should continue to wear masks in public spaces.
“Just because the government says do not wear masks, you do not have to throw your masks away. (Wait) at least for another three months… Those who are sick and elderly, they should permanently wear masks,” Salkar told reporters in Panaji. Salkar is incidentally also the head of the Goa Bharatiya Janata Party’s medical cell.
On April 6, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had said that Goa would be mask-free soon, adding that the state administration was expected to issue orders to the effect soon. However, till Friday, no such formal order was issued by the government.
Salkar said that there was no need for Goa to emulate Maharashtra government’s move to lift curbs on wearing of masks, even as he said that those who were senior citizens or were suffering from co-morbid conditions should continue to wear protective face masks.
“As a doctor I have a simple advice, those who have illnesses, those who are senior citizens, those who have heart, kidney, cancer, if they are going to hospitals, it is always safer to wear masks. If you have asthma, it is safer to wear a mask. Those who are very healthy need not wear masks,” he said.
“If you are in a crowded place or in an air conditioned environment, it is better to take precautions till July. The next three months are very important. Yes, even if the government says it is not compulsory to wear masks, you should take care of yourself,” Salkar added.