Mask mandate: Philadelphia reinstates indoor mandate:

The city is the first major US metropolitan area to roll back masking requirements after several cities and states lifted restrictions as cases began to decline in January.

The city will move to its second level of COVID-19 restrictions that require Philadelphians to wear masks all indoor public placesIncluding schools, businesses, restaurants and government buildings.

“Starting today, I’m asking all businesses and institutions in Philadelphia to ditch those old mask-required signs and hang them in their windows,” Bettygole said at a news conference.

Monday’s case count is 50% higher than 10 days ago, Bettygole said, adding that the number of people hospitalized is still low. The city now has an average of 142 cases per day.

“By constantly wearing masks, we can continue to go about our daily lives and participate in our city life without contributing to the increased transmission of Covid-19,” Bettygole said.

Last week, city health officials announced they were considering a mask mandate and recommended people start wearing masks in indoor public places, even though the city was at a “Level 1: all clear” restriction level. To remain at Level 1, a city’s COVID-19 metrics must meet two or more requirements: new daily cases must remain below the 100 average new daily cases, hospitalizations must be less than 50 and There should be an “increase of less than 10%” in cases. Last 10 days.”

The city has now exceeded Level 1 requirements, although Bettygole believes masking precautions could keep cases from rising to previous levels.

“I suspect this wave will be smaller than the wave seen in January,” she said. “But if we wait to detect it and put our masks back on, we will lose our chance to stop the wave.”

On March 2, the city went down to its lowest “all clear” level, dropping the indoor mask mandate. At the time, major cities and states across America were abandoning their mandates.

Cases are increasing in many states

Nationally, cases are trending upward in more than half of the states, although the number of cases is still relatively small. On average about 34,000 new cases per day, daily case rate The US remains one of the lowest since mid-July.

White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha told CNN’s New Day on Monday that it is expected the number of COVID-19 cases will rise and fall during the pandemic, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said what action be done. Getting it is at the right place.

“What to do about it, we really want to be guided by the CDC on this,” Jha said. “CDC policy is right on this and that’s what I’ve been doing for months, and that’s what we should be doing.”

According to the CDC, the COVID-19 community level for Philadelphia County – where the city of Philadelphia is located – is low. In such communities, the CDC urges people to stay up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccinations and get tested if they have Covid-19 symptoms, but it does not recommend wearing a mask.

Jha also said the CDC will share a scientific framework this week for the federal transportation mask mandate that expires on April 18. The federal mandate requires masks on public transport such as planes, trains, buses and hubs such as airports and bus terminals.

On NBC’s Today show on Monday, Jha said expanding the federal transportation mask mandate is “absolutely on the table,” adding the CDC will make decisions based on the scientific framework it’s building.

CNN’s Raja Razek, Naomi Thomas and Amanda Watts contributed to this report.


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