San Diego County won't reinstate indoor mask mandate despite Los Angeles County decision

California orders watch list counties to close indoor operations amid surge in COVID-19 cases
Posted at 4:21 PM, Jul 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-16 02:19:05-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego County public health officials said Thursday they will not require masks indoors for everyone after Los Angeles County officials reinstated its mask mandate amid increasing COVID-19 cases.

Los Angeles County will require residents to wear masks indoors in public settings regardless of their vaccination status starting on Saturday night. LA County Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis said the county is "not where we need to be" in terms of vaccinations against the virus and that new cases have topped 1,000 for seven straight days.

In a statement on Thursday, San Diego County said, "in light of Los Angeles County’s announcement it will require masks to be worn indoors regardless of vaccination status, the County of San Diego reminds the public it will continue to following the California Department of Health guidance on masking and urges those who are unvaccinated to get vaccinated to protect themselves and others from the spread of COVID-19."

RELATED: Los Angeles County re-implements indoor mask mandate amid rise in COVID cases

California requires unvaccinated residents to wear a face covering in indoor public settings or outdoors when social distancing isn't possible. The state doesn't require vaccinated individuals to wear masks unless in certain settings, like hospitals, schools, and public transportation — where masks are required for everyone.

The increase in new coronavirus cases is being blamed largely on the spread of the delta variant of the virus. The variant was first detected in India and is considered more contagious and potentially dangerous than the original version of the virus.

Health officials have said that the best way to protect against COVID-19 and the delta variant is to be fully vaccinated.

In San Diego County, at least 2,227,697 residents (79.5% of the eligible population) have received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 1,918,152 residents have been fully vaccinated (68.4%).