On Tuesday November 17th, The Pennsylvania Department of Health rolled out further restrictions to stem the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. These new restrictions are related to traveling and masking especially as cases in our area continue to rise.
According to the press release, Dr. Levine, Secretary of Health issued an order requiring anyone who visits from another state to have a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours prior to entering the commonwealth. If someone cannot get a test or chooses not to, they must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival into Pennsylvania. Pennsylvanians visiting other states are required to have a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours prior to their return to the commonwealth or to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. This order, which takes effect on Friday, November 20, does not apply to people who commute to and from another state for work or medical treatment.
Dr. Levine’s new masking order states:
- Masks are required to be worn indoors and outdoors if you are away from your home.
- When outdoors, a mask must be worn if you are not able to remain physically distant (at least 6 feet away) from someone not in your household the entire time you are outdoors.
- When indoors, masks will now be required even if you are physically distant from members not in your household. This means that even if you are able to be 6 feet apart, you will need to wear a mask while inside if with people other than members of your household.
- This order applies to every indoor facility, including homes, retail establishments, gyms, doctors’ offices, public transportation, and anywhere food is prepared, packaged or served.
As we enter the holiday season please remember to be safe and continue to implement safe practices. It is understandable for a desire to get back to what we used to consider normal, especially as positive vaccine news has become more prevalent. It is important to remember as we want to gather with friends and family that there are 263,978 active cases as of yesterday in Pennsylvania and in Allegheny County there have already been 453 deaths.
Please stay safe and healthy this holiday season.