This State Just Expanded its Major Mask Mandate
The day after the city of Philadelphia announced they were tightening restrictions — including a ban on indoor dining, the closure of gyms, museums, libraries, arcades, bowling alleys, casinos, and movie and performance theaters, and multiple restrictions on gatherings, the state of Pennsylvania also announced some new mitigation efforts in order to control the spread of the virus. Read on, and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had Coronavirus.
Pennsylvania's "Targeted Efforts" Go Into Effect This Week
During a press conference on Tuesday, Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine announced the new "targeted efforts" that would go into effect this week, which include new tighter masking rules and additional testing requirements.
Anyone who visits Pennsylvania — or residents who travel to another state and return — will be required to get tested within 72 hours before entering the state. If they don't have their results when they enter, they will need to quarantine for 14 days. The only exception will be those who commute to work from the neighboring states of Delaware and New Jersey. This will take into effect Friday, Nov. 20.
The state's masking order will also be strengthened. "Wearing a mask is really one of the simplest steps that we can all take to slow the spread," Levine said. Per the updated guidelines, masks will still be required indoors and outdoors. However, when indoors, masks will be required whenever people are with others outside of their household — even if they are practicing social distancing. Masks will also be required inside every indoor facility, such as gyms and public transportation.
Levine also revealed that testing will be amped up amongst college students returning back to school.
Like many states in the country, Pennsylvania has been breaking its own records. On Tuesday they reported their highest ever number of single-day cases with the addition of 5,900 additional positive tests. Currently, 2,575 people are hospitalized with the deadly virus.
How to Survive the Pandemic and Protect Your Fellow Humans
On Monday, Pennsylvania's neighbor, New Jersey, also announced new restrictions. "I'm signing an Executive Order RETIGHTENING restrictions on gatherings to help stop the spread of #COVID19," Gov. Phil Murphy tweeted Monday morning. The new restrictions included limiting the number of people who could attend both indoor and outdoor gatherings, including sporting events and religious ceremonies.
As for yourself, no matter where you live, do everything you can to prevent getting—and spreading—COVID-19 in the first place until there's a vaccine available: Wear your face mask, get tested if you think you have coronavirus, avoid crowds (and bars, and house parties), practice social distancing, only run essential errands, wash your hands regularly, disinfect frequently touched surfaces, stay outdoors more than indoors, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.