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Indoor Mask Requirement Returns on Sunday

Jul 17, 2021 12:19PM ● By Jeanne Fratello
Starting at midnight on Saturday, July 17, Los Angeles County, including Manhattan Beach, is requiring everyone to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. 

The new rule was implemented in response to a new surge in COVID-19 cases. 

Across L.A. County, cases are highest and rising the fastest in adults age 18 to 49 years old. Of the new cases reported by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH) on Friday, 71% of new cases are among adults 18 to 49 years old.

In L.A. County there are 452 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized; a doubling from the 216 hospitalizations reported a month ago.

Despite Manhattan Beach's relatively high vaccination rate, cases are on the rise in town as well. Manhattan Beach saw 25 new COVID-19 cases in the past week, compared to 7 the week before and only 1 per week for most of June.

"We have all seen COVID-19 spread very fast in just a small amount time," said L.A. County Public Health Officer Muntu Davis in a statement. "The alarming increases in cases, positivity rates and the increase in hospitalizations signals immediate action must be taken to slow the spread of COVID-19. Otherwise, we may quickly see more devastating illness and death among the millions of residents. Without physical distancing and capacity limits during a time of substantial community spread, masking by everyone indoors is a simple and effective action we all can take to lower risk of transmission while limiting disruption to normal business capacity and operations. The urgency to get more people vaccinated remains high with this level of spread. For everyone who is eligible and still waiting to get vaccinated, the time do it is now.”


Why Masking?


According to LADPH, the risk of increased spread is highest among individuals that remain unvaccinated. The more COVID-19 spreads, the more opportunities it has to mutate – and the more COVID-19 mutates, the greater the chance there may be another variant that can spread even more quickly or cause more harm to the people it infects.

"Wearing a mask when indoors reduces the risk of both getting and transmitting the virus," reported LAPDH in a statement on Friday. "Despite the very low percentage of fully vaccinated people that have gotten infected since vaccinations started in December 2020, a total of 4,122 cases out of 4,769,828 fully vaccinated people (~0.09%) have been reported, as of July 13, 2021. While this is a small percentage, it is not an insignificant number in light of L.A. County's current substantial and increasing community transmission. It demonstrates that even with highly effective vaccines, there is still potential for breakthrough infections that can put everyone at risk - including those who are unable to be vaccinated. So, masking by all indoors can reduce everyone’s risk of infection and the risk of transmission to others if infected."

Anyone 12 and older living or working in L.A. County can get vaccinated against COVID-19.

To find a vaccination site near you or make an appointment at vaccination sites, visit www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish) If you don’t have internet access, can’t use a computer, or you’re over 65, you can call 1-833-540-0473 for help finding an appointment, connecting to free transportation to and from a vaccination site, or scheduling a home visit if you are homebound. Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status.

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