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Citizens across the country have been living wearing masks for the past two years. Photo: Twitter
People across the country have been wearing masks for the past two years. Photo: Twitter

Cartagena no longer requires face masks in open spaces

Cartagena joins the cities of Colombia to eliminate mandatory face masks in open places because it exceeds 70% of the vaccinated population.

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On Wednesday, Feb. 23, President of Colombia Iván Duque, announced that the requirement to wear masks in open public spaces will be lifted in municipalities with full vaccination rates over 70%.

Among the cities that meet this requirement are Bogota, Medellin, Bucaramanga, the island of San Andres and, Cartagena.

"Cartagena welcomes the decision taking into account that we have a 73% coverage in vaccination with complete scheme," said Johana Bueno, director of the Administrative Department of Health of Cartagena (DADIS).

The issue was the subject of debate last week, when Duque said on a tour in Europe that the use of masks would not be withdrawn.

"The truth is that mass vaccination and the use of masks are measures that have shown that we have been able to contain the last peaks of the pandemic without having to bring new closures to the country," Duque said at the time.

However, this new measure of not using masks in open spaces does not apply to public transport in the city, where they must still be used.

"In public transport we must continue to keep the face mask, because there is a closeness and agglomeration and, in general, there are no ventilation conditions," said Fernando Ruiz, Minister of Health and Social Protection.

As of Feb. 22, 2022, a total of 1,721,042 vaccines have been administered in the city, broken down as follows:

- First doses: 804,701

- Second doses: 597,855

- Single doses: 159,419

- Booster doses: 159,067

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