The mandatory mask-wearing is now being reestablished by Los Angeles health officials for the county’s ten million residents once again after a worrying spike in the coronavirus pandemic.
The re-issuance of the mask-wearing policy will begin on Saturday night and residents will be required again to wear masks in indoor public spaces, regardless of their vaccination status.
“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,” according to Los Angeles County Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis at a virtual media briefing Thursday.
He also added that there was evidence of “substantial community transmission.”
Even the fully vaccinated residents are also mandated to wear masks as a sacrifice in lowering the number of coronavirus victims and to prevent the infection from contaminating the unvaccinated people.
The official noted that those who received the vaccine have a higher chance of being protected from the virus and even with the spread of the Delta variant, believed to be twice as transmissible as the conventional coronavirus strains. Between Dec. 7 and June 7, the unvaccinated accounted for 99.6% of L.A. County’s coronavirus cases, 98.7% of COVID-19 hospitalizations, and 99.8% of deaths.
Despite this re-issuance, they will still allow indoor restaurant dining, although people will need to keep their masks on when they’re not eating or drinking.
Long Beach, which has its own independent public health department, will align with L.A. County’s health order. The other city in L.A. County with its public health department, Pasadena, already recommends that everyone — including the fully vaccinated — wear masks in indoor public settings, and the city is “reviewing options for a mandate,” according to a spokeswoman.
L.A. County’s rise in community transmission has accelerated dramatically since California fully reopened on June 15. For the weeklong period that ended that day, L.A. County averaged 173 new coronavirus cases a day.
For the seven-day period that ended Wednesday, the county’s average was 1,077 new cases a day. On Thursday, the county reported 1,537 additional cases.
California was the first state to announce a lockdown in March 2020 to stop the spread of the pandemic. Other states soon followed its example.
In June, more than a year later, California had largely reopened as the coronavirus infections and deaths receded as more people were vaccinated.
“With more than 20 million vaccines administered across the state, it is time to turn the page on our tier system and begin looking to fully reopen California’s economy,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom at the time. “We can now begin planning for our lives post-pandemic.”
And just a month after the country reopened, the nation’s largest county is returning to a mask mandate.
According to the Health officials, last Thursday six consecutive days that the county had seen 1,000 or more new coronavirus infections. New daily cases of the virus had spiked in January with nearly 20,000. That rate had plummeted to 100 new daily cases in June but has been on an upward trend. On Thursday, the daily infection rate reached 1, 296.
Davis said on Thursday that, “This is an all-hands-on-deck moment.”
The video below will show how coronavirus spike in Los Angeles:
Watch it here: CBS Los Angeles/Youtube