Chief Medical Officer proposes disbanding NPHET

The group has officially recommended an end to mandatory mask-wearing.

NPHET recommended ending the wearing of face masks in almost all settings and proposed that the group be disbanded.

If accepted by the government, the obligation to wear masks in shops, schools and public transport will end on February 28.

In what may be its final meeting, NPHET recommended lifting the latest Covid restrictions on mask-wearing.

Health officials have proposed that from February 28, wearing a mask will no longer be mandatory in schools, on public transport or in shops.

Public-facing staff such as bars, restaurants and barbers will also not have to wear masks.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly is briefed tonight on the recommendation.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan is also proposing the dissolution of NPHET.

He thanked the emergency team members for their efforts this morning and did not set a date for another meeting.

It is proposed that a smaller surveillance team take over the day-to-day management of Covid-19.

There was also a proposal to reduce testing and tracing.

Final details have not been decided, but it may imply that only the elderly and vulnerable should take a PCR test if they are symptomatic.

Fianna Fáil TD, Robert Troy, thinks we should accept NPHET’s advice: