- Kyle Bolt
New Brunswick's Path Forward - March 14th
Monday, March 14th will be a new chapter as all remaining mandatory COVID-19 measures are lifted.
Public Health will continue to provide advice and guidance on how people can reduce their risk and will also provide COVID-19 surveillance. They will alert the public when there is increased risk due to the virus spreading, similar to what is done for other communicable diseases.
The lifting of remaining mandatory restrictions means residents will no longer be required to wear masks in public spaces or limit the size of gatherings. All businesses and organizations will be permitted to operate at full capacity without the requirement for physical distancing.
“With the vaccination uptake in the province, the ongoing management of our hospitals, and the commitment of New Brunswickers over the past two years, we are able to remove mandatory restrictions,” said Dr. Yves Léger, acting deputy chief medical officer of health. “The virus has not left the province but as we move forward, I am confident that we can take the lessons we have learned throughout this pandemic and manage our personal risks and protect ourselves and those around us.”
While mandatory restrictions will cease, some facilities and businesses may choose to maintain their own policies on public health practices which can help protect their staff and patrons from respiratory infections, including COVID-19, influenza and common colds. These practices include getting vaccinated, staying home when sick, proper hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette, and maintaining ventilation systems. All employers and employees must adhere to the Occupational Health and Safety Act, which explains the duties and obligations related to the transmission of communicable diseases.
Isolation will no longer be required among the general public, however, people are encouraged to stay home if they are sick. Within vulnerable sectors a five-day isolation period for anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 is still recommended by Public Health. This includes people residing in long-term care facilities, shelters, and correctional facilities. For now, masking will continue for those working or visiting facilities where patients or residents are more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection.