PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Dr. James McDonald from the R.I. Department of Health advised everyone spend more time outside as the weather gets warmer.
On Wednesday, the outdoor mask mandate for all Rhode Islanders was dropped, regardless of their vaccination status.
“The ventilation outside is quite frankly so good there really isn’t a lot of risk of transferring disease,” McDonald said. “Going outside is very safe.”
Watch the full interview in the video above.
When outside in a crowded place, McDonald and other health officials recommend people continue to wear masks.
McDonald added that as people spend more time outside, to stay vigilant to mosquito and tick borne illnesses.
“The ticks are there,” he said. “If you’ve got grass, you’ve got a yard, you’ve got ticks.”
With masks coming off, some have been concerned about an increase in other illnesses.
“I think we’ve learned a lot of really good public health prevention, by the way, during the pandemic,” McDonald said.
He suggested people continue to wash their hands and not go to work or school when feeling sick.
On Tuesday, the Chinese government announced what may be the world’s first human case of the H10N3 strain of bird flu.
“I’m not worried about this,” McDonald said. “I’m not worried there’s going to be another global pandemic over this and I don’t want anyone else to be worried about it.”
The next time 12 News at 4 will be joined by McDonald is on July 1.