US Capital To Require Masks Indoors Regardless Of Vaccination Status - Mayor

WASHINGTON (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 30th July, 2021) The US national capital city is re-imposing its mask mandate beginning July 31 due to the new spike in COVID-19 cases, Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser told reporters on Thursday.

"Beginning this Saturday at 5:00 a.m. [EST] I will issue by Mayor's order the directive that people over the age of 2 must wear a mask indoors regardless of their vaccination status," Bowser said during A press conference.

The new daily case rate in Washington now is about 8 per 100,000, which is far lower than it was at the peak of the pandemic, but four times more than it was just recently.

DC Department of Health director LaQuandra Nesbitt mentioned an increase in a number of major metrics used by authorities in making evaluation of public health safety in the district. She also warned about the Delta variant, adding that vaccinated people can transmit it to others.

"We do not want to make some assumptions that we live in a bubble, and that our residents who are traveling to other places are not exposed to the Delta variant," Nesbitt said. "We know that people who are fully vaccinated, who are exposed to the Delta variant, have the ability to spread the decease to other people."

In the meantime, Bowser said authorities do not plan on imposing additional restrictions.

"We know this virus is going to be around, and we are going to still have to function in the world. kids are going to have to go to school, people are going to have to go to work, and that is how we go into the coming weeks," the mayor said.

As of Thursday, the US has over 34.5 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 611,000 related deaths, the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center said.