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California Extends Indoor Mask Mandate, Citing Rising Omicron Cases


California health officials have extended the indoor mask mandate at public premises through Feb. 15 as the number of COVID-19 cases spikes following the spread of the highly-transmissible Omicron variant. The mandate, which requires masks to be worn regardless of the vaccination status, started on Dec. 15, 2021, and was set to expire on Jan. 15. State Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly announced the extension on Wednesday. Whether the mandate will be removed in February is yet to be decided. “At that time, we will again re-evaluate the condition across California, our communities, and our health-care delivery settings to make sure that we are taking the latest information into account to determine if there would be another extension, or if we’re prepared to lift that requirement across the state,” Ghaly told reporters. “Omicron is here and it’s here now.” California recorded 165,889 new cases on Jan. 4, …  » Read full article

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