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USCG Specific Frequently Asked Questions

For additional coronavirus questions not covered in these FAQ or that your chain of command cannot answer, please e-mail To ensure the most timely response, please identify yourself (i.e. military member, civilian, Auxiliarist, contractor, family member) in your e-mail inquiry. 

COVID-19 | April 13, 2022

Face Mask FAQs

Q. When and where do I need to wear a mask?  
A.  Mask wear guidance is subject to Coast Guard policy, guided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In regards to Coast Guard facilities –  including child development centers, cutters, small boats, buildings, and aircraft – commands will use the CDC Community Level guidance for setting unit policy for general mast wearing. Current Coast Guard guidance does not require mask wearing indoors or outdoors in geographic areas with low or medium COVID-19 Community Level thresholds, regardless of vaccination status. However, it is recommended that everyone – regardless of vaccination status – wear a mask in an area with a COVID-19 High Community Level. Masks will continue to be worn in all healthcare settings. You should also follow applicable local, state, and federal mask requirements during off-base activities.


Q: Does making unvaccinated personnel wear a mask violate HIPAA? 
A. The mask itself is not protected health information nor does HIPAA apply to them.  


Q: If I continue to wear a mask, can I wear any type of face mask I choose? 
A.No, the Coast Guard does not authorize face masks with exhalation valves/vents or single layer neck gaiters for safety reasons and all face masks must be of neutral colors.  For additional information about types of masks visit the CDC website:  Masks and Respirators (