The return to pre-pandemic guidance, which was implemented on Tuesday, means that mask use will be based on clinical need based on infection prevention and control advice, so staff, patients, service users and visitors will not be routinely asked to wear facemasks.
It follows a review of the guidance introduced during the Covid-19 pandemic to protect staff, patients, service users and visitors, and recognises that Scotland has entered a calmer phase of the pandemic.
Alex McMahon, chief nursing officer, said that the step had been taken partly due to the success of the national vaccination programme.
He continued: “Due to the success of vaccines in protecting people, and the availability of treatments, now is the right time to revise the advice on wearing masks in health and social care settings and return to pre-pandemic guidance.
“We recognise that some staff may have concerns around the withdrawal of this guidance and would expect organisations to undertake individual occupational health assessments and risk assessments as appropriate.
“We continue to be vigilant in our response to Covid-19 and encourage everyone to make sure they are up to date with the boosters available to them. We are grateful for the tireless work of health and social care teams during these challenging times and to everyone who has helped them by adhering to the guidance.”