More Greeks in Patras Seek Mask Exemptions from COVID-19

PATRAS, Greece — Known for inventive ways to get around laws – or just defy them – so many Greeks in the country''s third-largest city of Patras are asking for exemptions allowing them not to wear COVID-19 masks that doctors are being warned to vet the requests closely.

Τhe Doctors Association of Patra in western Greece reported a growing number of people are requesting documents allowing them to skirt the health protocols put in places to help prevent the spread of the deadly Coronavirus.

In a letter to its members, the association said there is “particularly high social pressure to issue certificates of exclusion for the use of masks,” said Kathimerini.

According to the letter, many people are pressuring doctors to issue certificates confirming that they suffer from respiratory problems – it is one of the two categories for which the use of a mask is excluded.

The association urged doctors to “avoid issuing such opinions when, in your scientific judgment, there are no objective and substantiated reasons for excluding patients,” and that the certificates aren't given without a valid reason.

As cases are rising in the country again because of defiance of health regulations, the New Democracy government extended the mask rule to more public places although while already in place in supermarkets it was largely being ignored and still is.


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