SALINAS – Monterey County’s COVID-19 case rate remains low and stable, along with its hospitalizations, but test positivity has increased as mask requirements evolve after a federal court ruling handed down on Monday nullified the national mandate.
“We hope to hear from the California Department of Public Health whether or not they have any changing recommendations or requirements,” Monterey County Public Health Officer Dr. Edward Moreno said at the conference. county press release Wednesday. “The CDPH website still states that people in California who are on public transportation or transit hubs must always wear face coverings, which is inconsistent with what the (Centers for Disease Control) just released this week. From a public health perspective, we hope to get something from the California Department of Public Health soon and we can go from there.
Earlier this week, a federal judge in Florida struck down the Biden administration’s nationwide mask mandate covering airplanes, airports and other public transportation.
Moreno said the CDC’s website indicates that as a result of the court order, the order requiring masks on public transportation and at transit hubs is no longer in effect. “The CDC continues to recommend that people continue to wear masks on indoor public transportation.”
The January 2021 CDC order required face masks to be worn by all people on public transportation traveling to, within, or from the United States or U.S. territories. The order also required all people to wear masks while in transportation hubs, including indoor and outdoor areas.
Alaska, Allegiant, American and United airlines, which fly out of Monterey Regional Airport, have all made masks optional for travelers, and the airport’s website says, “In accordance with (Transportation Security Administration) n no longer enforces the federal mask mandate, face masks will no longer be required for passengers and customers at Monterey Regional Airport. The CDC continues to recommend masks on domestic public transportation. »
Monterey-Salinas Transit said Wednesday that masks are no longer required on its buses, but people are encouraged to wear them if they wish.
Amtrak posted on its website that “although passengers and Amtrak employees are no longer required to wear masks on trains or at stations, masks are welcome and remain an important preventive measure against COVID. -19 Anyone who needs or chooses to wear one is encouraged to do so.
Caltrain, which provides commuter service from Gilroy to San Jose and San Francisco, still requires people to wear masks on its trains, but expects to receive further instructions in the coming days.
According to the California Department of Public Health, Monterey County’s seven-day average COVID-19 case rate on Tuesday was 3.1 per 100,000, and its test positivity rate was 2.0%, per compared to last week when its case rate was 3.6, and its test positivity rate was 1.5%. CDPH has reported two people hospitalized with COVID-19 and a total of 727 confirmed deaths in Monterey County from the virus since the pandemic began.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, of Monterey County people age 5 and older who are eligible for vaccination, 87.1% have received at least one dose and 77.8% are fully vaccinated.
Go to mcvaccinate.com to register for a COVID-19 vaccination appointment and visit montereycountyvaccines.com/testing-sites to find a testing site.