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Gov't considers lifting anti-COVID recommendation to wear masks indoors

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downgrading COVID-19's legal status to the same level as seasonal influenza 

as many have opined, here and elsewhere, it was obvious a long time ago that Covid would be something we would all end up having to live with, as with many other afflictions, as a fact of life.

15 ( +28 / -13 )

America and Europe moved on.

13 ( +32 / -19 )

Go outside now, how many people really obey Government request not to wear mask outdoor now.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2022/05/20/national/japan-outdoor-mask-advice/

-6 ( +24 / -30 )

Saw a man wearing a gas mask, goggles and a visor on a Shinkansen the other day. Last summer I spotted a lady swimming with a mask. My neighbors wear masks in their own house. Haven't seen a cyclist without a mask in a long time... People in this country love masks.

-6 ( +26 / -32 )

NOBODY is listening to the advice given about not really needing to wear masks outdoors so what makes them think anybody will heed this advice?

They made the announcement once back in May and never mentioned it again. I often find myself the only maskless person outdoors.

7 ( +26 / -19 )

Nice. The government has followed its plan. Let's hope this is the final stage.

But infectious disease experts and doctors remain cautious about a radical relaxing of mask-wearing rules, saying it is better to put them on in crowded places or when a person is or suspected to be infected with the coronavirus.

Indeed. Don't want to have a "China incident" do we?

From 0-60 in 3 secs might cause tens of thousands of people to died of Covid in hospitals in a short time because of suddenly relaxed restrictions.

-7 ( +10 / -17 )

I have to give Japan's government credit for all its considering it's been doing.

-3 ( +11 / -14 )

I have to give Japan's government credit for all its considering it's been doing.

Indeed. Japan didn't throw its people into the grinder for some apparent political gain. Image 2.5 years of lockdowns and a police state to be hit with almost 60,000 people dying of Covid in hospitals in 7 weeks, when strict restrictions were suddenly relaxed with no preparation or warning. That would be clueless, planless, painful and disgraceful.

Well done Japan.

-10 ( +11 / -21 )

Might be too late!? Mask wearing seems to be ingrained as "appropriate behavior" now for ALL Japanese, indoors and out. I get the sense they will never take them off. Hope I'm wrong...

-4 ( +18 / -22 )

I have recently seen a few double maskers out and about. Must be all those rising numbers and efforts to protect others and themselves by off setting le natural

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

And no one will listen. People are still wearing their masks outdoors while walking alone. This country has been seriously traumatized by covid, and nothing will shake them out of it.

3 ( +30 / -27 )

with people stop wearing masks all at once...!

Doubt that will happen.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

This won't matter. If Japanese people are willing to mask/double mask up outside in late August, then they are still going to do it indoors.

And that's okay - my personal happiness isn't derived from other people's choices that don't affect me. I stopped wearing a mask outside of my job altogether. It has not been a problem for me.

Other Covid related policies that directly affect me and/or my wellbeing, such as border measures or vaccination requirements, I actually have a problem with.

-2 ( +14 / -16 )

Well yey, walk around without a mask then, and if anyone walks up on you be like “しー! No comversation and social distancing please.”

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

The other nonsense that should stop are the constant coronavirus announcements in shops, malls and supermarkets. Time to take down all the social distancing notices. Get rid of those BS plastic screens in restaurants too.

9 ( +19 / -10 )

Last summer I spotted a lady swimming with a mask.

Nice! I saw a person holding their breathe once wear a mask and crazier still, I saw a mask walking about with no mask on!! What gives?

Their children must be traumatised.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

The vast majority of people wearing masks are not doing so for health reasons. It has now become a subconscious social obligation. For many going out without a mask is like going out naked.

11 ( +22 / -11 )

Ill believe it when I see it in Japan, but..

the slow and deliberate walkback of all the covid failures continues.

the Japanese government admitting this in the middle of wave #8 is proof positive even they get it.

Masks are, and have always been, useless.

Just wait a few more months and the great unmentionable will be mentionable..

-12 ( +12 / -24 )

Masks are, and have always been, useless.

Nice scientific rigger there Master my old master.

Something to proofread below:

There’s a direct association between machismo and the refusal to recognize and respond appropriately to the covid crisis. It’s a result of versions of masculinity in which selfishness and indifference – individualism taken to its extremes – are defining characteristics, and therefore caring and acting for the collective good is their antithesis.

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

For those travelers which endured hotel quarantine in Japan it was the government’s recommendation to wear a mask alone in the hotel room…

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Just like how I avoid smoking places, I will avoid any establishment where the staff is not masked and don't use a plastic barrier.

You won't.

I suspect so will many others.

They won't.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

I think this will take a long time.

Last week I was walking down a street when three 70 somethings walked past me in the opposite direction. I had my mask down since I was by myself and the street was practically deserted. This street is in a town with no tourist attractions. One of the ladies turned her head away from me while cupping her hand to block her nose and mouth from my direction. Did I mention she had a mask on!!??

unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident. In the past year, I’ve been to a few super sentos that have outside baths. No problems there, but once I tried to use an indoor bath. The amount of people arm to arm is surprising. But, you should have seen how fast the bath emptied when I got in.

If you’re not Japanese, you need pretty thick skin when not wearing a mask. Good luck.

1 ( +13 / -12 )

Here is my question to those many who challenge the wearing of masks and them not being effective.

What is the reason over how many years nurses and doctors all over the world wear masks when they are in the operating room and or in a sick patients' room wear one? I am sure it is not for decorative reasons and so there has to be a logical reason for this tool that has been used worldwide.

For myself, I will continue on my road, outside I will not wear a mask but when inside a shopping center and or with people I don't know I will be wearing a mask.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Class 2 diseases are subject to extensive measures, including limiting movements by infected individuals and their close contacts.

What is going with Class 2 now only proves ineffective, no? Class 2 restricts the access to the majority of ordinary clinics, leaving many outpatients untreated while compulsory reporting and communications remain snail or paralysed.

Here I've been suggesting the category downgrade for almost two years just in order to save more patients' lives and invaluable healthcare resources. "Considering" the review is coming too late.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

I only wear a mask when I have some sort of respiratory symptom like sneeze, cough, or runny nose. Happened once this past winter. Otherwise, no mask. It's unnecessary and incredibly unhygienic to keep it on all the time. Now watch all those people saying it was to protect others keep it on to now protect themselves.

Also, get those things off healthy childrens' faces!

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

I will avoid any establishment where the staff is not masked and don't use a plastic barrier.

lol, unbelievable.

-2 ( +10 / -12 )

I never wear a mask. It is a personal choice. It’s like some people use driving gloves in their cars.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

I only wear a mask when I have some sort of respiratory symptom like sneeze, cough......

or runny nose.

Just no. Stay home and when your symtpoms have gone, get out and about again. And definitely no masks with runny noses.

Sometimes I wish one of the symptoms of Covid was a runny nose. That would curtail mask use overnight.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

japanese herd waiting for Fumios speech at NHK so next day half of japanese public will not wear masks....put any common sense behind because of ruuuru....TIJ

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Have never worn a mask outdoors (I live in a rural area) and stopped wearing a mask indoors about 2 months ago. No one has said anything to me. Although I have had people in masks fake coughing near me as a form of harassment.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

I was told by some Japanese women that wearing a masks makes them feel better and they need to wear less makeup and don't need to smell other people.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

NOBODY is listening to the advice given about not really needing to wear masks outdoors so what makes them think anybody will heed this advice?

Personally, I don't care what other people do, it's their business, what I look foward to is not looking like a puppy killer for not wearing a mask into a combini.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

I'm a step ahead of you, government. I haven't been wearing a mask outside for about 2.5 years, and indoors for over a year. Even then it was only perfunctory, with my nose poking out so I could actually breath. Completely pointless, and I don't care about the looks from Japanese who it upsets or wish they had the courage to do the same.

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

Everyone knows the true numbers and knows Covid is nothing to mess with, I really don’t see the correlation between the number of deaths and infected with downgrading the virus, I’m guessing this info in discussion purely economically driven. This is why everyone is still masking regardless of downplaying the virus.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Moral of the story: non-masks=bad restaurant

can you back up this claim with any scientific rigger?

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

''...no longer asking the public to wear masks indoors in principle unless they have symptoms''

It's the right way to go. But they could go one better and create supportive work environments that allow people with stmptoms of Covid, the Flu or other infections to just stay the F at home for a few days without penalty.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

But they could go one better and create supportive work environments that allow people with stmptoms of Covid, the Flu or other infections to just stay the F at home for a few days without penalty.

I may be wrong, but isn't this already in place? The people who I know who have caught it have been instructed to stay away from work for 7 days and have not been penalized / forced to use their paid holidays.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Anecdote for the demask-curious: living in Minato Tokyo, working in Chiyoda, I stopped wearing a mask indoors (and usually even on transit) around the beginning of December and had no problems so far. I carry one just in case, and I did put it back on last week when I had the sniffles, but if you’re hesitant to take the step, just do it!

also, plenty of Japanese people at Tokyo American Club (where the mask mandate was lifted in September, I think) go without masks. As others have said, it should be a personal choice - if you think it protects you, go ahead and wear it

5 ( +9 / -4 )

> According to the source, the government is considering to relax rules on indoor face coverings as it believes that when COVID-19 is downgraded to a Class 5 disease under infectious disease legislation from the current Class 2, anti-infection measures should also be on par with those taken for Class 5 pathogens, such as the seasonal influenza.

So govt will not be responsible anymore for costs of hospitalizations and will shift to the infected individuals.

Fair I guess

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

As others have said, it should be a personal choice - if you think it protects you, go ahead and wear it

I wear it to protects others from me in case I'm shedding.

 I stopped wearing a mask indoors (and usually even on transit) around the beginning of December and had no problems so far. 

So I don't expect you to have problems if those around you are wearing masks

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

It is clear in the article that doctors and medical professionals are starkly against a downgrade of the virus. I guess in 2023 we only listen to our doctors when it’s convenient.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

In defence of people alone wearing masks in cars, they are about the only ones wearing them correctly. They know that if they touch it or take it off, it must be thrown away and a new one put on. For somebody running errands and making a few stops it is better just to leave the mask on then use 10 in the same day.

However, masks seem to be useless considering the current high rate of spread of COVID.

Long past time to rip the veil off and get back to normal.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Country where worst Covid19 deaths in present whole world is Japan. 

Japanese authorities who continue to fail to respond Covid19 since 2020 don't admit their misstep, don't even intend to reduce deaths, want to imitate only easing restriction of other countries due prioritizing economy than the lives of people. And Japanese authorities who don't yet build even enough virus test system despite spending 3 years will more increase deaths.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

In Japan, calls have been mounting from some political parties, including the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, to review the government policy on mask wearing. A source within one of the parties cast doubt on an apparent discrepancy between the existing policy and a government push for an increase in inbound travelers.

But infectious disease experts and doctors remain cautious about a radical relaxing of mask-wearing rules, saying it is better to put them on in crowded places or when a person is or suspected to be infected with the coronavirus.

Everyone knows of course that the politicians are the authorities on this subject

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Anyway let's see what people will say and do when covid is downgraded and the sick need to pay for treatment out of their own pockets.

Probably not a big hit because of insurance unless someone ends up in icu

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Long past time to rip the veil off and get back to normal."

So if we rip the veil off we'll get back to normal?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Just make a cosplay and cute chara campaign to convince the habituated in Japan to ditch the masks. Come on, everyone, "Let's GoTo Faces" and ditch the magical plastic, whilst at it.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It seems sensible to mask up when social distancing is impossible, like on packed trains and in crowded supermarkets. Other than that, people do it because it has become a social norm and because the masks help keep the face warm outdoors and hide a lack of make-up. It doesn't matter what the government says, having 98% of people around us masked 24/7 is the new normal.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

People waiting for this Government to give their recommendations before deciding for themselves whether or not to use, environmentally damaging, useless masks, that harm other people's children's development, doesn't seem very intelligent to me and indeed selfish.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

that harm other people's children's development

How does my mask harm other children?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

How does my mask harm other children?

Studies show that it impairs children's development by not seeing other people's facial cues which are vital for learning.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/science/children-masks-language-speech-faces-1.5948037

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/masks-can-be-detrimental-to-babies-speech-and-language-development1/

Many hard of hearing children also rely on lip reading and emotions to understand what's being communicated.

Also, due to the environmental impacts of masks, the kids own future ecosystems are being damaged due to billions of tonnes of micro plastics that have entered the ocean, bird life being decimated and polymers being taken from fossil fuels - namely petrochemicals.

https://www.greenpeace.org.uk/news/single-use-face-masks-hurting-wildlife-what-you-can-do/

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/covid-19-ppe-entangling-and-killing-wildlife-180977502/

https://news.yahoo.com/1-6-billion-disposable-masks-142813561.html?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly9kdWNrZHVja2dvLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAEc105JpJm7gbdFawCPm_TtecZw9-hsEQuGzksYZvOcHetDXJNAwviLSrhiLmCY2qO7OmR5vYSWgBas_SgGS2UY9uvlhq6Ui7MB_GNrJlZKk02jL2-Ak20FKVAapgxMNs4hf0RRKeQy4AxD_1M1eov-NQ4jUgqcOzgsFxuCEVMi5

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Let's say I don't actually interact with children. Where does it leave me regarding your first two points?

The environmental issue seems a filler reason TBH

doesn't seem very intelligent to me and indeed selfish.

I think that about your stand point. And don't use yahoo as a reference!! Cringe.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Let's say I don't actually interact with children. Where does it leave me regarding your first two points?

If you ride the train, got to the shops or to the park you interact with children.

And don't use yahoo as a reference!!

It's from an article which as also rehashed many times through other agencies. This is hardly academic writing with citations needed. Cringe. lol

1 ( +4 / -3 )

If you ride the train, got to the shops or to the park you interact with children.

What? Walk past them? Hardly an interaction.

Cringe. Lol

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

If you wear a mask you harm other people's children?

That's a new one at least.

Anyway I'm curious,why other's children? Why not own children

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Wearing a mask surely protects them from airborne diseases!!!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Why not own children?

I believe people are harming their own children too.

Like CNNs Dr. Leana Wen's reversal on masking children when she found it impacted her own.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2022/08/23/my-kids-wont-wear-masks-school/

1 ( +3 / -2 )

In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention decides on mask wearing by taking into factors such as the number of hospitalized patients.

And the US has no way of working that oput properly, and grossly over-estimates non 'vaccinated' hospitalisations.

https://alexberenson.substack.com/p/more-evidence-that-american-data

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Baby steps

1 ( +2 / -1 )

And the US has no way of working that oput properly, and grossly over-estimates non 'vaccinated' hospitalisations.

https://alexberenson.substack.com/p/more-evidence-that-american-data

Alexberenson?

That looks like a blog, does he(?) write somewhere that might be remotely reputable?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The Japanese Government is ‘considering’ floating the idea of not asking.

a Japanese friend of mine tells me actual decisions generally take around 25 years to implement.

so folks think for yourselves

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Do you believe in such things as scientific studies and evidence or opinions and gossip suffice?

Yes. I read many scientific studies, listen to podcasts of doctors discussing them and generally believe the studies look at what the topic is, within their frames of error and limitations.

When it comes to opinions, it depends on who is making it and their relevance to the topic (such as the opinion piece I linked which was written by Dr Leana Wen as per her experience with her own child).

It then depends on what the opinion is.

Not really sure what you mean about gossip, as I never really get into it or discuss it.

I usually take gossip to mean people discussing other people and their relationships. Celebrity affairs, weight gain and menial what not.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I would suggest reading such people that investigate, rather than blindly following politicians and pay for play 'scientists'. A contrary perspective may open your eyes. Be aware that big pharma's influence spreads far and wide.

You're the one plainly doing what you're trying to imply I'm doing

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Alexberenson?

That looks like a blog, does he(?) write somewhere that might be remotely reputable?

Alex Berenson, probably more than any other journalist and/or politician, is responsible for exposing the secrets and lies on covid that precipitated the west away from the madness of everything covid related.

Hes been on your radar for over 3 years now, and you know it.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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