LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Due to the continually rising numbers of positive COVID-19 cases, the state of California has extended the current mask mandate through at least February 15.
Along with the length of the original mandate, imposed on December 15 and set to expire on January 15, this extension will now push the mandate through a full two months.
The mandate is directed for all indoor spaces, including gyms, salons, movie theaters, restaurants and so on, for everyone -- vaccinated or not.
California Health and Human Services indicated that the extension comes in large part due to the surge in hospitalizations and Coronavirus infections, especially with the Omicron variant, which is highly-transmissible.
Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly noted that this extension comes in light of the drastic amount of hospitalizations due to COVID-19, with the numbers reaching over 8,000 on positive Coronavirus patients alone. Overall, there are more than 51,000 Californians hospitalized -- both non-COVID and COVID patients -- on Wednesday. This number is less than 2,000 off the winter surge totals from 2020.
He advised Californians to increase the quality of face masks as well, since scarves, gaiters and loose-fitting cloth masks are much less effective against the highly-infectious Omicron variant.
(© Copyright 2022 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)
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