Masking is now optional at Good Samaritan Hospital.

In a Tuesday press release, Good Samaritan’s Chief Operating Officer, Adam Thacker, says the change comes from new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

They recommend that health care facilities can choose to make masking optional when COVID-19 community transmission is low and then re-enforce masking when community transmission is high.

The new policy will be reviewed weekly.

Thacker says they will determine future decisions on masking based on the COVID-19 Community Level Status for Knox County as determined by the CDC Data Tracker.

Thacker added they’ve been looking forward to this day for two years as the hospital has remained steady with following CDC recommendations and guidance.