The Czech Republic is tightening its mask-wearing rules by requiring citizens to wear medical-grade masks in some areas, the Health Minister Jan Blatny announced on Friday.
Starting from Monday, people are to use masks that filter particles or use nanosilver for higher protection when they go into shops, public transport, or hospitals.
Blatny urged citizens to wear medical-grade FFP2 or FFP3 masks, but said it would also be allowed to wear two regular surgical masks on top of each other.
The Czech Republic is currently battling a spike in daily new infections, which the government says is due to the spread of the more contagious coronavirus variant first identified in Britain.
On Friday, 11,553 new cases were reported, taking the total number to more than 1.1 million infections, with 18,913 fatalities in the country of 10.7 million inhabitants.
Meanwhile, harsh criticism rained down on Roman Prymula, the government’s pandemic consultant, after he was seen on the VIP stand of a football match between Slavia Prague and Leicester City on Thursday.
Prymula had earlier called for the imposition of a two-week total lockdown.
Prime Minister Andrej Babis called his behaviour hypocritical and promptly ended their collaboration. (dpa/NAN)