Wearing masks in Intermountain Health’s hospitals, clinics and, medical facilities will become optional beginning March 15 for visitors and patients.
“Masks were a vital component in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infections and other respiratory illnesses not only for our patients, but also for our caregivers,” said JP Valin, MD, Intermountain’s chief clinical officer. “As respiratory infection season comes to an end, we expect to see a continued reduction of RSV, COVID-19, and other flu-related cases, allowing for the easing of Intermountain’s masking policy.”
The decision to move from mandatory masking to optional masking in clinical care areas was made using current health data and in collaboration with community partners, and state and local health authorities.
Intermountain caregivers will return to routine infection prevention requirements. Masks for caregivers will be optional in many areas, but will continue to be mandatory in operating rooms, areas of respiratory isolation, or where clinically appropriate, as directed by infection prevention teams and in compliance with federal agencies.
“I’m grateful to our caregivers and those assisting our patients for their commitment they have exhibited during the past three years to always put the safety of our patients and their colleagues first and foremost,” said Mandy Richards, RN, Intermountain’s chief nursing officer.
Intermountain will continue to monitor local and national health conditions and adjust its mask policies accordingly. As always, policy will comply with federal, state, and local requirements.