Public health rules out a return to “severe measures” such as curfews or closing bars and restaurants, but plans to postpone the lifting of mandatory masks to contain the sixth wave.
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Photo archive, QMI Agency
The Acting National Director of Public Health, Dr. Luc Boileau, will announce to the government on Monday whether he recommends dropping masks in public places in mid-April, as planned, or whether he would rather wait, out of caution.
For now, April 15 is still the date circled on the calendar to end the obligation to wear a mask in public places, “but we are studying the situation very seriously,” the director of National Public Health Acting confided. the Dr Luc Boileau.
Photo archive, Martin Alarie
The Acting National Director of Health, Dr. Luc Boileau
In an interview delivered to our parliamentary office the day after the official declaration of a sixth wave, Dr.r Boileau said he is giving himself until Monday to decide whether the masks will go off a week or two later than expected.
“It’s definitely something that is being considered,” he confirmed.
Ultimately, it will be up to the Legault government to decide. “We’re not sure about that yet,” he continued. We need to make sure all calculations match this recommendation and we’ll be done on Monday.
A difficult month of April
The month of April, which has only just begun, promises to be a difficult one. This sixth wave, “I think it will last a few weeks,” the D . believesr Boileau.
As Health Minister Christian Dubé said a little earlier, it is hitting hard, especially in the regions, and in a particularly worrying way in the health network, where there are now more than 10,000 absent workers. †
This new wave “is bigger because it will gradually pick up almost everyone who has never had COVID,” fears the Dr Boileau.
He therefore once again calls for caution by focusing on raising awareness among society as a whole. “The virus, it remains contagious, if we have it, for 10 days,” he repeated.
While many are back to work in “face-to-face”, the Dr Boileau believes that in the current context it would be wise to “reduce this momentum” by, for example, betting on the hybrid formula, even if only for a few days or a few weeks.
“Office meetings, reunion parties… Now is not the time to do that,” he insisted.
Tips for Easter
Two weeks before Good Friday, Public Health is also preparing to issue its advice for the Easter holidays, which are conducive to gatherings.
“We’ll see how it will evolve and we’ll get back to you with our suggestions, our recommendations,” he said.
The good news is that to see the power of the sixth wave, unless there is “another dumb variant,” which in all probability should be less in the fall, Dr. Boileau.
What Dr. Luc Boileau thinks
File photo, Stevens LeBlanc
“Population measures, such as closing activities, closing restaurants, closing bars, imposing curfews, all that, we exclude that. […] That’s not where we’re going […] We have other levers.
“Let’s do what it takes, as individuals and as a society, to make sure the curve bends. And even if there was a plateau, it would be less damaging than a continuous rise.
“The sixth wave is an opportunity for people to learn to live with the virus.”