Some Washington hospitals will continue to require masks after state mandate drops in April
Washington state's mask mandate for health care settings will end on April 3, but a group of Western Washington hospitals and medical organizations will continue to require folks to mask up while in their facilities.
"In light of the current situation and local, state, and federal guidance, as an acute care and outpatient clinic health care facilities, our organizations will continue to require masking in patient care areas and strongly recommend or require in public spaces," a statement from 11 Western Washington health care providers said.
The statement adds that each facility is different, and officials at differing locations may define "public" and "patient care" spaces as they see fit. It also notes that Covid transmission remains high in Washington state and that immunocompromised and high-risk patients still need protective measures.
King County and Pierce County public health officials came out in support of the continued masking agreement among the local providers.
The statement was signed by officials from:
- Kaiser Permanente Washington
- MultiCare Health System
- NW Kidney Centers
- Olympic Medical Center
- Overlake Medical Center and Clinics
- Providence Swedish Puget Sound Region
- Puget Sound Kidney Centers
- Seattle Children's
- UW Medicine
- Virginia Mason Franciscan Health
Meanwhile, federal pandemic emergency measures are expected to end in May.