Will Philadelphia reinstate the indoor mask mandate every time it sees a rise in cases?
Philadelphia, PA, had quite a week:
- April 11: Philadelphia announced plans to reinstate the indoor mask mandate on April 18.
- April 17: Lawsuit filed against Philadelphia.
- April 18: Indoor mask mandate goes into effect.
- April 22: Indoor mask mandate ends.
So will Philadelphia panic and go mask crazy any time COVID cases rise a little bit? That is why the city reinstated the policy this week. From April 11:
Monday’s case count is more than 50% higher than it was 10 days ago, Bettigole said, noting the number of people hospitalized is still low. The city is now averaging 142 cases per day.
“By wearing masks consistently, we can continue to go about our daily lives and continue to take part in the life of our city without contributing to increasing transmission of Covid-19,” [Public Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl] Bettigole said.
The lawsuit against the city claimed the indoor mask mandate goes against the CDC recommendations and the city does not have the authority to issue the mandate.
The mayor and city officials defended the move all week.
What changed? Cases decreased:
“Due to decreasing hospitalizations and a leveling of case counts, the City will move to strongly recommending masks in indoor public spaces as opposed to a mask mandate,” a spokesperson with the Philadelphia Health Department told NBC10 Thursday night. “Given the latest data, the BOH voted to rescind the mandate.”
The health department did not release data to back up its reversal on masking, saying more information would be provided Friday. But Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl Bettigole, told the Board of Health at a public meeting Thursday night that hospitalizations had unexpectedly gone down 25% in a matter of days.
“We’re in a situation that we really had not anticipated being in this soon but it is good news,” she said, according to a transcript of the meeting. “So I’m really very happy … to say it appears that we no longer need to mandate masks in Philadelphia and that we can actually move to simply a strong recommendation.”
Did masks make this happen? I doubt it since it only started on Monday. Maybe stop testing everyone? It’s been over two years.DONATE
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