If you’re out in public without a mask, you should be prepared to show a letter explaining why. Alberta’s top doctor says anyone with a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a face-covering in public, indoor spaces as per provincial rules, will now require an “exception letter” from a health professional.
Conditions include sensory processing disorders, developmental delays/cognitive impairment, mental illness disorders, recent facial trauma/oral or jaw surgery, allergies to mask components, and clinically significant acute respiratory distress.
The medical exception letter must come from a nurse practitioner, physician, or psychologist and may be presented when in a public setting if requested by enforcement officials or in court if a ticket is issued.
Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw says it’s a matter of empowering enforcement teams, something that’s especially important during this third wave of COVID-19. She also says requiring proof isn’t meant to punish people unfairly but to make sure those who are capable of complying with the rules, are doing so.
Hinshaw notes Saskatchewan and Quebec have similar rules around mask exemption letters.