Catalonia prepares for a rebound in covid and rules out removing masks in transport

The Minister of Health, Manel Balcells, has assured that he will not pressure the Ministry of Health to withdraw the obligation to wear a mask on public transport because winter is expected to be “complicated” epidemiologically and it is better to “be prudent”.

In an interview on Catalunya Ràdio, the minister predicted this Monday that the coming months "will not be easy" because the incidence of flu and covid will predictably rise, which will impact the healthcare system, although with a "less aggressiveness" regarding to previous winters, has sustained.

In this sense, it has ruled out asking Health to withdraw the obligation to wear masks on public transport and in other environments where it currently has to be worn.

“We will not press to remove it, we will not raise it in the Interterritorial Council because a complicated winter is coming and there are environments in which it is prudent to maintain it; and it is easier to maintain it than to remove it and then have to reincorporate it”, stated Balcells (ERC).

Instead, his predecessor in office, Josep Maria Argimon (JxCat), had always advocated that the use of masks be a recommendation.

On the other hand, Balcells has admitted that some waiting lists that are "unsustainable" "have to be solved".

He has highlighted that the problem is not in serious pathology -oncological surgery or cardiology-, but in referrals to specialists, pain treatment or non-urgent surgeries.

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