Face mask optional in planes effective today (Sept 28)

Khairy Jamaluddin

KUCHING, Sept 28: Face masks are no longer compulsory while onboard a plane, says Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

He said this new protocol is effective starting today (Sept 28, 2022).

This is on top of the last Covid-19 protocol on Sept 7 that ruled face masks as optional indoors.

“The Health Ministry however highly encourages the continuous usage of face masks for certain groups of individuals namely those with fever, cough and flu; high-risk groups such as the elderly, those with chronic diseases, low immunity and pregnant mothers; and individuals traveling with high-risk groups such as the elderly and children,” said Khairy in a statement today.

He said the decision was made in view of the Covid-19 condition that has been rather controlled in Malaysia while taking into account the current technologies in planes.

Other than good ventilation setups in cabins, he said planes nowadays use high-efficiency particulate absorbing (HEPA) filters to remove airborne contaminants.

He also believed that frequent disinfection schedules in planes and seat arrangements toward the front are helpful in preventing Covid-19 spread.

“Besides, this relaxation is also in line with health recommendations from countries such as the European Union, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore.

“The need to wear face masks onboard a place is nonetheless also subjected to the requirements by the countries visited by the passengers,” Khairy added. — DayakDaily