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Home > Medical and Carer Certificates > Can Qoctor provide a medical exemption from wearing a face mask during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Can Qoctor provide a medical exemption from wearing a face mask during the COVID-19 pandemic?
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During the COVID-19 pandemic, the wearing of face masks is a key part of the public health response, aimed at reducing transmission of the virus in the community.

 

Masks are an extra precaution to protect against COVID-19 in areas with community transmission. Check your local state and territory advice about mask recommendations and requirements. If you are in a situation where physical distancing is difficult such as on public transport, you may choose to wear a mask, even where state/territory recommendations no longer require it.

 

In general, doctors will encourage all people to wear a mask to protect themselves and those around them, subject to local state and territory requirements.

 

From time to time there may be specific reasons that a person finds it difficult to wear a mask. This is an important and complex discussion that can have significant health impacts. Qoctor does not provide mask exemptions via our online service, as we believe this is a discussion that should take place with your usual GP, or a doctor who has access to your full medical history. 

 

In advance of this discussion, it may be helpful for you to be aware of recognised exceptions that allow people not to wear a face mask. These can include:

 

  • a significant medical condition that makes it difficult to breathe
  • a serious skin condition on the face
  • an intellectual disability
  • a significant mental health condition
  • persons who have experienced trauma.
  • communicating with a person with a hearing impairment, where they need to be able to see your mouth for communication
  • people engaging in strenuous exercise such as jogging, running, swimming or cycling
  • those undergoing some medical treatments.

 

If you are treated unfairly because you are unable to wear a mask due to a valid medical condition or a disability, the federal Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) (DDA) may apply. Further detail about lawful exemptions can be found on the appropriate state and territory government public health websites.

Some state and territory equal opportunity and anti-discrimination agencies have also produced detailed guidance about mask-wearing requirements in their jurisdictions and how they relate to state and territory discrimination law. These include:

 

 

If you wish to discuss a medical exemption from wearing a face mask either for yourself, or for someone under your care, contact your local GP or regular doctor for further advice and assistance.

 

 

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