Is California requiring masks again?
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles County will again require masks be worn indoors in the nation's largest county, even by those vaccinated against the coronavirus, while the University of California system also said Thursday that students, faculty and staff must be inoculated against the disease to return to campuses. Associated PressWith virus cases rising, mask mandate back on in Los Angeles . 8 hours ago
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Los Angeles County said Thursday that residents will be required to wear masks indoors once more, regardless of vaccination status, amid the spread of the highly contagious delta variant of COVID-19.
The new ordinance will go into effect late Saturday night and comes just a month after California dropped most restrictions for vaccinated people and restarted its economy.
“We’re not where we need to be for the millions at risk of infection here in Los Angeles County, and waiting to do something will be too late given what we’re seeing now,” Dr. Muntu Davis, the county’s health officer, said during a news briefing. “This is an all-hands-on-deck moment.”
Previously, those who were fully vaccinated were allowed to remove their masks across California, but health officials said the new measures would help stanch the spread of the delta strain. The orders will be in place for the foreseeable future, although Davis stressed that more restrictions could be put in place should case numbers begin to skyrocket.
“Wearing a mask indoors with others reduces the risk of both getting & transmitting the virus,” Los Angeles Public Health wrote on Twitter. “We’re requiring masking for everyone while indoors at public settings & businesses, regardless of vaccination status so that we can stop the increased level of transmission we’re seeing.”
Wearing a mask indoors with others reduces the risk of both getting & transmitting the virus. We’re requiring masking for everyone while indoors at public settings & businesses, regardless of vaccination status so that we can stop the increased level of transmission we're seeing. pic.twitter.com/xmr77qsmBv
In late June, public health officials in Los Angeles urged residents to wear masks once more in public spaces, citing the spread of the delta strain, which has since become the dominant variant of COVID-19 in the United States.
Los Angeles County is averaging more than 1,000 new cases a day, a sharp increase from the average of 173 cases per day when the state was still under virus restrictions in mid-June. The Los Angeles Times notes, however, that cases and hospitalizations are more than 93% lower than they were at the height of the pandemic, and deaths are at low levels.
Health officials have stressed that even amid the surge in cases linked to the delta variant, vaccines remain the best method to combat serious illness and death. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, has continued to urge Americans to get vaccinated, and figures show that almost all of the nation’s COVID-19 deaths are among people who remain unvaccinated.
About 51% of California’s population has been fully vaccinated.
Read full article at Fox News
16 July, 2021 - 11:00pm
As various publications and public health experts have detailed this afternoon, as of 11:59 p.m. this Saturday, July 17, everyone in Los Angeles County will once again be required to wear a mask indoors when in public.
Notably, this new requirement applies across the board — even fully vaccinated visitors and residents will need to mask up.
BREAKING—With #COVID19 cases and hospitalizations surging, Los Angeles will now *require* indoor mask again, **regardless of vaccination status**. @CountyofLA’s mandate is what needs to be done to slow #DeltaVariant—where is our @CDCgov? @CDCDirector—please rules update ASAP. pic.twitter.com/9vxQJbANES
— Eric Feigl-Ding (@DrEricDing) July 15, 2021
It’s a confusing but not entirely unexpected shift, given the rapid spread of a new, even more contagious version of COVID-19, commonly referred to as the “delta variant.”
Just over 69% of Los Angeles County residents age 16 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, but that still leaves a significant percentage of the population vulnerable.
Although the risk to fully vaccinated people remains low, it’s unreasonable to expect businesses to confirm each customer’s vaccination status in determining whether or not they should be wearing a mask — requiring face coverings across the board may be the only way to ensure compliance.
As of now, the county doesn’t appear to have any immediate plans to implement additional restrictions, and that should remain the case as long as case numbers don’t continue to rise.
If community spread remains an issue, however, new measures may be added, Los Angeles County health officer Dr. Muntu Davis told the Los Angeles Times. “Anything is on the table if things continue to get worse, which is why we want to take action now,” he said.
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