This Tuesday, July 14, the Governing Council of the Junta de Andalucía has approved a series of measures to curb the rate of Covid19 infections. Mask wearing will be compulsory throughout Andalucia, including wearing them when walking on beaches and pools, and a reduction in the number of people who can attend funerals.
At its routine weekly meeting this Tuesday (14.07.2020), the Governing Council of the Junta de Andalusian have passed a series of preventive measures in the fight against the coronavirus that will make facemasks in open and enclosed spaces compulsory by law throughout Andalucía. The measure, which was announced on Monday by the Chairman of the Junta de Andalucía, Juanma Moreno, will come with fines of €100 for those who fail to comply.
Among the measures approved by the Junta to curb the spread of COVID19, also notable is the reduction of group sizes at funerals, allowing for gatherings of up to 25 people outdoors, or up 10 if the gathering takes place indoors.
This was announced by the Minister for the “Presidency, Public Administration and Interior” and spokesman for the Junta de Andalucía, Elías Bendodo, at a press conference which he headed together with the Delegate for “Health and Families”, Jesús Aguirre, and the Head of Development, Marifrán Carazo.
Bendodo stressed that the mandatory use of facemasks will come into effect as from 00.00 on Wednesday, both outside and in enclosed spaces, regardless of whether a social distance of 1.5 meter can be maintained. Similarly, the Junta has set a fixed penalty of €100 for those who fail to wear a facemask; the regulation will be enforced by law enforcement.
Facemasks Must be Used When Walking Along Beaches and at Swimming Pools, Except “when swimming”
“Facemasks will now have to be part of your outfit, we must wear one all day and at all times,” said the spokesman for the Junta, who explained that Andalusians should wear a mask unless circumstances prevent it, such as “when eating or bathing in the sea.” In answer to questions from journalists about its use whilst out walking, or at the beach or swimming pools, the Minister of Health, Jesús Aguirre, stated that “it need not be used when you are under your umbrella with your family”, but should be used on walks along the shore or in any other public place where there is a possibility of coming into contact with others.
As for funerals, Elías Bendodo explained that Aguirre has suggested that the number of attendees will be reduced from 65 to 25 people outdoors and from 30 to 10 in enclosed spaces, because “it has been confirmed funerals have been a source of new outbreaks.”
“We are not going to shirk our obligations when making decisions, which are guided by public health advice, to protect the public,” said the Minister for the Presidency, who believes that in Andalusia “we have been more prudent than in other regions and that pre-planning has made the evolution of the pandemic here somewhat less.” However, he has insisted that “every precaution will not be enough.”
As of today, and after the latest figures produced by the Junta, there are 13 cases of Covid19 outbreaks in Andalucía. Nine of these are in the investigation phase and four are in the control phase – in the provinces of Granada, Málaga, Almería and Córdoba. There are a total of 202 confirmed cases in the region (19 less from yesterday), with 2 outbreaks now having been controlled; one at a hostel in Algeciras (Cádiz) and another in the city of Cádiz, where 35 people tested positive.
Pharmacies Assure that there are Enough Facemasks for Everyone
The Andalusian Council of Colleges of Pharmacists (Cacof) said on Tuesday that the pharmacies “are ready” to guarantee the provision of facemasks (COVID19), before the law is enforced.
“Today, masks are available in all pharmacies throughout Andalucía and full availability is guaranteed. There will be no issues with supply via our drugstores,” said the ‘Cacof’ Chairman, Antonio Mingorance.
He also reminded that the use of facemasks is “one of the fundamental measures” in preventing new infections and that, a few months ago; pharmacists started a campaign to promote how they should be used, in accordance with public health advice.
Today, the Minister of Health has also announced that pharmacies will dispense hygienic masks to the elderly and vulnerable groups who produce a health card.