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No Indoor Masks Beginning Today in Santa Clara County

Santa Clara County has removed its mandate for indoor masks today, the last county in the Gulf region to do so following the region’s winter rise in COVID-19 cases.

District public health officials said Tuesday they expect to meet the third and final threshold required to remove local masking rules, as the county’s seven-day average of new cases has held below 550 for six consecutive days.

Last month, public health officer Dr. Sarah Cody said the county would revoke its masking order once the seven-day average dropped below 550 new cases for seven consecutive days, 80 percent of residents completed their initial vaccination series and COVID-19 The local hospitalizations remained “low and stable,” she said.

Nearly 85 percent of all county residents have been vaccinated, according to county data, and 244 people are currently hospitalized with the corona virus, compared to 262 hospitalized on Feb. 24 when Cody announced the mask mandate could be removed as early as March 2.

Cody noted in a briefing on the morning of March 1 that although it was “good news” that local conditions would allow the county to lift its mask requirements, the virus had not completely disappeared.

“It’s not entirely safe … we still have a COVID community transfer, but we’ve reached a level where it feels safe enough to make the transition from a requirement to a strong recommendation,” she said.

The county removes the mask requirements in most settings for vaccinated people, but also for unvaccinated people for the first time since the epidemic began.

The changes fit the county to the state’s declaration on Monday that it will no longer require unvaccinated residents to wear a mask inside public spaces such as retail stores, restaurants and gyms.

The state lifted its mask mandate on Feb. 16, as did 10 of the 11 counties in the Gulf.

Santa Clara was one of the few counties across the country that maintained its internal masking rules in an effort to further reduce the spread of the virus.

The county and state still recommend residents wear a mask indoors, if they want to do so, to reduce the spread of the virus. Cody also said the county will support individual businesses if they choose to continue demanding masks inside the home.

“The risk in our district is diminishing – this is good news,” she said. “But there are still many who are at risk, a long time of COVID is still unknown. It still makes sense to prevent infection as much as we can.”

Masks will still be required regardless of the state of vaccination under state and federal laws in health facilities, shelters for the homeless, prisons, nursing facilities and public transportation.

Santa Clara County Supreme Court officials said masks will still be required inside the home in all of the county’s courts, despite the removal of the district mandate.

After the county’s new policy goes into effect on Wednesday.

“Like many of us in Santa Clara County, our court is encouraged by data from our public health officials showing a decline in case rates and hospitalizations across the county,” Judge President Theodore C. said. Zeiner in a statement. “However, it is imperative that our court continues to be vigilant in our efforts to protect the health and safety of everyone who enters our courts.”

Cody said Santa Clara County will also adjust the state school’s masking policy on March 12, when the nationwide requirements for twelfth-graders will end.

The district has not had its own mask requirements specifically for schools since 2020, and instead has chosen to follow state guidelines.

Cody did not give concrete details about whether and when the sweeping demand for the use of masks inside the house could return, but said a further increase in corona cases should be expected at some point in the future.

“We’ll probably have another record,” she said. “The contours of that summit are not known to us. We do not know what the variation will be, we do not know how the variation will behave. So we always have to be prepared.”

No Indoor Masks Beginning Today in Santa Clara County Source link No Indoor Masks Beginning Today in Santa Clara County

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