Mask mandate and mandating wearing a face covering law and public health regulations as a medicine and hygiene concept to halt the spread of virus infections with 3D illustration elements.

When Los Angeles county lifted COVID-19 restrictions for businesses and public spaces last month, many hoped that perhaps the worst of the pandemic was behind them. But with Los Angeles County reinstating mask mandates for indoor public spaces, which was made effective July 17 at 11:59 PM, such optimism has been put on hold.

The mandate, which applies regardless of vaccination status, is contradictory to recent information released both by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the California Department of Health which state that vaccinated populations do not need to use face coverings, the Los Angeles Times reports. Health officials, however, are essential asking vaccinated people to take one for the team.

The fuel behind the reinstating in mask mandates comes from a dramatic increase in cases per day since L.A. County fully reopened on June 15th. In the last week prior to the lifting of restrictions, the county averaged 173 cases per day — a number that has since risen to over 1,000 new cases per day from July 8-14. No set date is in place for lifting the mandates as it is dependent on a decline in case rates.

“This is an all-hands-on-deck moment,” says Dr. Muntu Davis, L.A. county’s health officer. “We’re not where we need to be for the millions at risk of infection here in Los Angeles County, and waiting to do something will be too late given what we’re seeing now.” 

The reinstatement of mandates serves as an abrupt reminder that infection control practices when cleaning facilities won't be going away any time soon for many regions. While case rates and further restrictions are impossible to predict, it's always important for distributors, BSC and in-house staff to be prepared for any uptick in frequencies or supply needs. For a refresher on best practices for eradicating COVID-19 in facilities, click here.