Face Mask Exemptions
Publication date: January 2021
Following recent news coverage regarding supermarkets requiring 'medical exemption' from people not wearing a face covering in their stores, we'd like to remind practices that there is no need under the rules for people to seek proof of exemption from their GP.
Government guidance on face masks states “you do not need to seek advice or request a letter from a medical professional about your reason for not wearing a face covering.” Requests for such letters will only add to the heavy burden of work on practices and our advice is that such requests should be declined.
The guidance clearly sets out situations when people are exempt from the requirement to wear a mask. If someone has an age, health or disability reason for not wearing a mask they do not need to show proof of exemption. However, some people may feel more comfortable showing something that says they do not have to wear a face covering. In these cases an exemption card or badge can be downloaded from the gov.uk website here.
Our earlier advice to practices regarding requiring patients to wear face masks when attending appointments can be found here.