Dr. Nirah Shah, New York State Health Commissioner, announced the prevalence of the flu in the state. The new rule will require health workers to wear masks during the course of their jobs if they have not received the flu shot.
The regulation was adopted earlier this year aiming to protect patients from getting the flu from healthcare workers. This new regulation ensures that healthcare workers in hospitals and other regulated facilities wear a surgical or procedure mask in areas where patients are present. This applies to healthcare workers that have not received the flu shot and may impose a risk to patients.
Influenza can be very severe and cause death in individuals with underlying conditions. The regulation will also protect healthcare workers from acquiring the flu to patients. In New York, flu cases have been reported in 45 counties and all boroughs of New York City.
This rule applies to the following entities: general hospitals, nursing homes, diagnostic and treatment centers, certified home health agencies, long term home health care programs, license home care services agencies, limited licensed home care service agencies, and hospitals.
The masks will be required for healthcare workers until the state announces that the flu is no longer prevalent.