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Sacramento County to require wearing masks indoors due to delta variant


Sacramento County has become the latest county to issue a mask mandate in response to rising COVID-19 cases from the highly infectious delta variant. “The continued increase in cases is concerning — universal indoor use of masks is the least disruptive and most immediately impactful measure to take to slow the rate of transmission” Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye said in a statement on Thursday. “Our best protection against COVID-19 continues to be the vaccine. We urge all eligible residents to get vaccinated in order to protect themselves, and their family and friends.”Cases have spiked to 18.3 per 100,000 people on July 20, up from 5.2 on June 24, the county said. That number was 21.6 on Wednesday.Epidemiology program manager Jamie White said in a briefing that the delta variant has become the most prominent strain in the county with 149 total cases, as of June 27.During the week of July 18 to 24, all of the COVID-19 cases that were genotyped in the county were the delta variant, she said. There have been 389 breakthrough cases among people who were fully vaccinated since January. About 10% of COVID-19 cases in June have been among people who were fully vaccinated, White said. Health officials stressed that vaccinations were still the best way to protect oneself. This June, 55% of fully vaccinated cases were symptomatic, compared to 86% of non-fully vaccinated cases, White said. Six of 132 COVID-19 hospitalizations were breakthrough cases in June.”We know that no vaccine is 100 percent effective and though concerning, it’s not surprising that we are seeing breakthrough cases,” she said. Kasirye said that one issue with people who are infected with the delta variant is that, “they tend to have higher viral loads. And when you have a situation where you have increased transmission in the community you increase the risk both for the vaccinated and unvaccinated.” The new masking order takes effect after midnight and calls for residents, including people who have been fully vaccinated, to wear a mask indoors at all public places and workplaces. California health officials, meanwhile, have recommended universal masking indoors, in alignment with new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks indoors in places with “substantial” and “high” spread of the coronavirus.Sacramento joins Yolo County and Los Angeles counties in issuing a mask mandate.Kasirye said there was no end date yet for when the order would end. The county was not considering business capacity restrictions or new physical distancing requirements, she said.The county’s goal is to have 70% of eligible residents fully vaccinated. As of Thursday, just 49% were fully vaccinated and 55% partially vaccinated, according to the county’s dashboard.

Sacramento County has become the latest county to issue a mask mandate in response to rising COVID-19 cases from the highly infectious delta variant.

“The continued increase in cases is concerning — universal indoor use of masks is the least disruptive and most immediately impactful measure to take to slow the rate of transmission” Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye said in a statement on Thursday. “Our best protection against COVID-19 continues to be the vaccine. We urge all eligible residents to get vaccinated in order to protect themselves, and their family and friends.”

Cases have spiked to 18.3 per 100,000 people on July 20, up from 5.2 on June 24, the county said. That number was 21.6 on Wednesday.

Epidemiology program manager Jamie White said in a briefing that the delta variant has become the most prominent strain in the county with 149 total cases, as of June 27.

During the week of July 18 to 24, all of the COVID-19 cases that were genotyped in the county were the delta variant, she said.

There have been 389 breakthrough cases among people who were fully vaccinated since January. About 10% of COVID-19 cases in June have been among people who were fully vaccinated, White said.

Health officials stressed that vaccinations were still the best way to protect oneself.

This June, 55% of fully vaccinated cases were symptomatic, compared to 86% of non-fully vaccinated cases, White said. Six of 132 COVID-19 hospitalizations were breakthrough cases in June.

“We know that no vaccine is 100 percent effective and though concerning, it’s not surprising that we are seeing breakthrough cases,” she said.

Kasirye said that one issue with people who are infected with the delta variant is that, “they tend to have higher viral loads. And when you have a situation where you have increased transmission in the community you increase the risk both for the vaccinated and unvaccinated.”

The new masking order takes effect after midnight and calls for residents, including people who have been fully vaccinated, to wear a mask indoors at all public places and workplaces.

California health officials, meanwhile, have recommended universal masking indoors, in alignment with new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks indoors in places with “substantial” and “high” spread of the coronavirus.

Sacramento joins Yolo County and Los Angeles counties in issuing a mask mandate.

Kasirye said there was no end date yet for when the order would end. The county was not considering business capacity restrictions or new physical distancing requirements, she said.

The county’s goal is to have 70% of eligible residents fully vaccinated. As of Thursday, just 49% were fully vaccinated and 55% partially vaccinated, according to the county’s dashboard.



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