Italy lifts outdoor mask mandate amid easing of covid rules

Masks are no longer required in most outdoor spaces in Italy.

Italy lifts its outdoor mask mandate on Friday February 11, with the government pledging to ease further restrictions amid an improving coronavirus situation.

The obligation to wear a mask will now only apply in crowded outdoor spacesAs good as inside covered public roomsand people are still bound to wear masks with them when needed.

The new national rules will remain in force until March 31, with Italy scheduled to end emergency statethe mechanism granting authorities special powers to implement, modify or revoke urgent measures as needed.

On Monday, the Italian Deputy Minister of Health Andrea Costa said the government intended not to extend the emergency legislation, which was introduced on January 31, 2020 and has been extended several times over the past two years.
Ending the state of emergency would pave the way for the eventual relaxation of the Green Pass system that dominates the daily life in italy and is required to access most activities and services.

There is currently a two-tier system in place, with the “basic” version of the Green Pass available via a negative covid test result, alongside the “Great“Version that can only be obtained by people vaccinated or cured of covid.

Health Undersecretary Costa told RAI television on Thursday that he could foresee a “gradual easing” in March of the Super Green Pass, “perhaps starting with outdoor locations,” the health agency reports. ANSA press.

“We are still in a phase of fighting covid even if there are encouraging signs, with a 30 percent drop cases in a week” – Minister of Health Roberto Speranza said on Monday – “This was possible thanks to an extraordinary vaccination campaign.”

Also on February 11, Italy nightclubs, discos and dance halls are allowed to reopen after being closed just before new years eve, subject to covid restrictions.

Under the new rules, a Super Green Pass will be required to enter clubs and masks will be required except on the dance floor, with venues operating at a maximum capacity 50% indoors and 75% outdoors.

It is also planned to gradually increase the capacity of sports stadiums from March 1, when the maximum attendance offered outdoors would increase to 75% (currently 50%) and up to 60% in indoor stadiums (currently 35%).
The government has recently eased some restrictions for schools and people vaccinated – including a Green Pass of unlimited duration for those who had the third “recall” shot – with first Mario Draghi promising to move towards an “even greater reopening of the country”.

Nicola Magrini, the head of the Italian Medicines Agency AIFAtold RAI television on Thursday that there will be no fourth dose of covid vaccine in the coming months, but that there would “probably be an annual follow-up shot”, describing it as something “we have to get used to”.

Life remains difficult for not vaccinated in Italy, with the Super Green Pass compulsory in public transport, in bars and restaurants, sports halls, hotels, cinemas, theatres, shopping centers and sports stadiums.

The “basic” Green Pass is required to enter post offices, banks, public offices and tobacconists, as well as hairdressers, barbers and beauty salons.

From February 15 all public and private workers over 50 will need a Super Green Pass to access their workplace, under Italy’s controversial vaccination mandate for the over-50s.
Earlier this week there was speculation that the warrant to carry masks inside could end on April 1, but government sources later told ANSA that it was “not a given” and that any decision on that would depend on the epidemiological situation.

On Thursday, Italy recorded 75,861 new covid cases in the past 24 hours and 325 additional coronavirus-related deaths, according to the last digits of the Ministry of Health.

More … than 88 percent of the Italian population over the age of 12 has been vaccinated and 35 million people have received a third dose.

For official information on the covid-19 situation in Italy, see the ministry of health website.

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