Richmond County Dental Society News

NYSDOH Ends COVID-19 Masking Requirements for Health Care Facilities Effective February 12, 2023

The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) is ending its novel coronavirus (COVID-19) masking requirements in health care facilities effective February 12, 2023.

The NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) has issued new guidance to health care facilities regulated by the Department under Articles 28, 36, and 40 of the NY Public Health Law (i.e. hospitals, nursing homes, etc.) on the use of masks and face coverings. The new guidance is now aligned with CDC recommendations which advises that all administrators of these facilities develop and implement their own guidelines on masking for staff and visitors, which includes COVID-19 and uses transmission levels as a minimum threshold.

This new guidance has no effect on private dental offices since they are not regulated by the NYSDOH. In addition, the mandate for patient masking ended on March 17, 2022, when the designation of COVID-19 as an airborne infectious disease under the HERO Act ended. Private sector employers, which includes private dental offices, are no longer required to implement their workforce safety plans. Patient masking is no longer mandated by New York State in this setting.

Even though the HERO Act has expired, NYSDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) still recommends masking for all people in a healthcare setting.