Australian Doctors Call for National Mask Guidelines

Australian Associated Press is an Australian news agency.
July 21, 2020Updated: July 21, 2020

Australian Medical Association president Tony Bartone said every person in areas of community transmission should use masks.

Doctors have urged Australian governments to adopt a consistent approach to face masks and to strengthen border controls to stop COVID-19.

“The Victorian and NSW governments are to be commended for encouraging mask use, but a consistent national cabinet-backed approach is now needed should outbreaks occur elsewhere,” he said.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has stopped short of making face coverings mandatory, as they will be in Melbourne and Mitchell Shire from July 23.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison backed the Victorian and NSW government’s’ approach.

“The situation in Sydney in particular, and NSW more broadly, is not the situation in Melbourne. It could not be more different,” he told 2GB radio.

He wore a mask during a medical appointment recently and has no qualms about being seen with a face covering in public.

“If the medical advice wherever I am requires me to do so, of course I would,” Morrison said.

Bartone said international and domestic border closures had been successful in slowing the early spread of coronavirus.

NSW will toughen its border restrictions on people wanting to enter from Victoria from Wednesday.

Queensland is considering expanding its blacklist of NSW virus hotspots.

Matt Coughlan in Canberra