NAPA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — Napa County has issued an indoor mask mandate, following behind seven other Bay Area counties that did the same a few days prior.
Until now, people who are fully vaccinated – or people who were pretending they are – could go without a mask inside public spaces.
The new rule comes as the country sees another surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, however health officials say it is mostly unvaccinated people who are feeling the most serious of it. There have also been breakthrough cases reported, of fully vaccinated individuals coming down with COVID-19.
Seventy-five percent of the people who live in Napa County are fully vaccinated, but there is still a concerning rise in hospitalizations threatening hospital capacity, says the county’s health officer.
The delta variant makes up majority of the COVID-19 cases in California.
One of the hardest transitions to wearing a mask again inside is at the gyms and fitness centers.
Some people may have canceled their memberships once they heard they had to workout with a mask on.
But local health officials believe the vaccine and masking up are the perfect pair to get cases back down.
“The decision to go forward with a masking mandate, when Napa County has mostly followed state guidance, is based on the need to protect our healthcare system,” said Dr. Karen Relucio, Public Health Officer for Napa County. “There is still a concerning rise in hospitalizations that is threatening hospital capacity.”
The mask mandate is also in place because health officials are trying to make sure schools can fully reopen for in person education this fall.
But that can’t happen if cases become out of control and another lockdown or more restrictions are put in place.