S. Louis county in Missouri is mandating face masks for everyone coming indoors.
Anyone over the age of 5, regardless of vaccination status must wear a face mask.
Masks are also strongly encouraged for large groups outdoors.
Dr. Fredrick Echols, acting director of health for the City of St. Louis said, “We’ve lost more than 500 St. Louisans to COVID-19, and if our region doesn’t work together to protect one another, we could see spikes that overwhelm our hospital and public health systems.”
St. Louis County reported 241 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday.
This has bumped the 7-day average up to 212.
This bump is slightly higher than the level that it was at in mid-April.
The county’s average test positivity rate has risen to 9.4% over the past week, the highest it has been since late January.
CDC: Delta Variant Counts For 83% Of U.S. Cases
Dr. Faisal Khan, acting director of the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, said that vaccines are the “best way to stop the fast-spreading Delta variant of COVID-19.”
“We are relentlessly committed to making vaccinations more accessible and convenient,” Dr. Khan said Friday.
“In the meantime, we need everyone, vaccinated or not, to wear masks in crowded indoor settings.”
Just over half, 50.2%, of adults in Missouri are fully vaccinated, while 57.5% have received at least one dose of a vaccine.
Local Officials Reinstating Mask Mandates
Los Angeles County officials announced last week that everyone must wear masks indoors regardless of vaccination status.
Clark County officials announced earlier this week that all employees in Las Vegas must wear masks indoors.
The officials, however, stopped short of implementing a mandate for the general public.
The CDC announced on May 13 that vaccinated Americans no longer have to wear masks.
The Delta variant’s surge has caused some local officials to rethink that guidance.