The Bahamas Ministry of Health and Wellness on Wednesday, September 21st, 2022, announced that the country’s mask mandate would be relaxed as of October 1st, 2022, with members of the public no longer required to wear a mask in most settings.

The Hon. Dr. Michael R. Darville, Minister of Health and Wellness, in his announcement detailed, “…the wearing of face masks will continue to be required in the following settings or by the following persons: 1. All persons accessing a health care facility for any reason (workers, patients, visitors, vendors, et al); 2. In any indoor classroom setting in an educational institution, except where Rule 27 (20 of the Health Services Rules (Covid 19) Prevention and Management of Community Spread) (2021); or 3.   Any non-resident worker of a long-term care residential facility.”

Explaining when the ministry had taken the decision and urging respect for those who would continue to make use of masks, he continued, “The adjustments to the mask mandate were recommended by the Advisory Committee of the Ministry of Health & Wellness following a meeting today. Some Bahamians will continue to prefer to wear a mask for protection from COVID; their choice to do so should be respected by all. The MOHW will continue to distribute free medical-grade masks in schools.”

Minister Darville added, “The Ministry of Health & Wellness continues to advise persons to adhere to the safety protocols as it relates to handwashing/sanitizing, physical distancing, and personal responsibility. Persons experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should get tested. The Ministry also reminds that free testing and free vaccinations continue to be available to members of the public.”