ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — Alameda County’s COVID-19 Community Level was raised from the CDC’s “low” to “medium” on Thursday, according to a press release from the county. In accordance with state guidance, masks are now required in certain non-health care, high-risk settings, according to the press release from the Alameda County Health Care Services Agency.

In compliance with California statewide masking guidance, indoor facilities in Alameda County where masks are now required again include:

  • Homeless shelters
  • Emergency shelters
  • Cooling and heating centers
  • Alameda county correctional and detention facilities

Indoor masking will continue to be required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, in healthcare settings and long-term care facilities, according to the release. The county is also recommending that residents at risk for severe illness wear masks in crowded indoor public settings.

The number of daily reported COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the county are “rapidly rising,” according to the county. The seven-day average as of Dec. 8 is 21 cases per 100,000 residents. Currently, there are 149 Alameda County residents hospitalized with COVID-19.

“We have observed worsening increases in COVID-19 case reports and hospitalizations since October,” said Alameda County Health Officer Dr. Nicholas Moss. “Taking actions like masking and staying home when sick can prevent spreading illnesses like COVID-19, flu, and RSV and help protect our health care system from strain.”

The county also recommends getting the latest updated COVID-19 booster, testing if symptomatic or exposed and limiting gatherings or keeping them outdoors when possible. This week, omicron COVID vaccine boosters were approved for children 6 months and older.