PARIS (Nov 4): Face masks will become obligatory again in schools in 39 regional departments of France, where Covid-19 cases have crossed the alert threshold.
As schools in the country reopen on Nov 8 following brief holidays, the mask rule will be reimposed for primary schools amid concerns over daily new cases, Anadolu Agency (AA) reported, quoting government spokesman Gabriel Attal on Wednesday (Nov 3).
The 39 departments are in addition to the 22 departments where masks were declared compulsory last month, taking the total to 61, or nearly half of the French territory.
Attal said in the concerned 39 departments, the incidence rate is above 50 cases per week per 100,000 inhabitants and therefore masks in primary schools will be back again.
According to the school protocol announced by the Ministry of Education, if a department has a low circulation of the virus and the incidence rate is less than 50 cases per 100,000 inhabitants for five consecutive days, then primary school students do not need to mask up.
While the number of daily new cases is significantly lower, Attal said as soon as the situation deteriorates, health measures that were lifted will be reactivated.
According to the latest Health Ministry data, there are 10,050 new cases, 39 fatalities and 6,764 Covid-19 patients admitted in hospitals.
Source: France reinstates mask requirement in 39 areas as Covid cases rise | The Edge Markets