Portugal ends indoor face mask rule, except for public transport and health centres

The government ended the mandatory use of face masks in indoor spaces, except for places like public transport and health centres.

After two years of pandemic and with a population almost fully vaccinated, the Cabinet on Thursday decided to end the compulsory use of masks in indoor spaces, including in schools, but will maintain the requirement in public transports and in health centres.

“We are not at the ideal level, but we intend to assume with transparency that the path taken allows us to change the framework we had. We are assuming that the circumstances of the pandemic have changed”, explained Marta Temido, at the Cabinet’s press conference, announcing the end of face masks in indoor spaces, except in cases like public transport and health infrastructures (nursing homes included).

In addition to dropping the mandatory use of masks in enclosed spaces, with the appropriate exceptions, it is no longer mandatory for those who pass through or have a final destination in Portugal to fill out the passenger location form, both for flights and cruises.

António Costa’s government has also decided to end the mandatory Covid-19 testing and presenting the Covid digital certificate is no longer required to access nursing homes or health care facilities.

The measures will only come into effect after publication of the Cabinet’s resolution approved on Thursday, it should be published this Friday, but as it is a decree it will still have to be promulgated by the President of the Republic.

(article last updated at 2h37 pm)