Marin County health officials announced Friday that if local COVID-19 transmission and hospitalisation rates continue to fall, the county will join San Francisco in relaxing the indoor mask mandate in some settings next week.
Fully vaccinated people will be able to remove their masks in indoor settings such as gyms and offices beginning Oct. 15 if the following conditions are met: the group size does not exceed 100 people, everyone is vaccinated, the host keeps a list of everyone present, and access to the activity is controlled and not open to the general public, according to the county’s public health department.
The county’s indoor mask order, which continues to apply to all residents, regardless of vaccination status, in more crowded settings such as grocery stores, would be expanded to include employee commuter vehicles, religious settings, and college classes.
“We’re not ready to lift the mandate entirely, but we’re in a good position to relax restrictions in the safest settings.” Dr. Matt Willis, County Public Health Officer, said in a statement. “Science has shown that when an entire group is vaccinated, the risk of infection is significantly reduced.”San Francisco announced Thursday that a similar change to its mask mandate will be implemented on Oct. 15 if cases and hospitalizations remain stable or decline.Marin and seven other counties — Alameda, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Sonoma, and Napa — announced three criteria for when mask mandates can be lifted entirely on Thursday.
First, a county must reach and maintain the “moderate” (yellow) tier of case rates as determined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s data tracker for three weeks.
San Francisco is currently classified as “substantial.”Second, the county’s health officer must determine that the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations is “low and stable.”Finally, 80 percent of a county’s total population must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, or eight weeks must have passed since a COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 was authorised.
As of Thursday, 75 percent of San Francisco’s population had received all of their vaccines.
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