Philadelphia will again require masks in indoor public settings such as restaurants, schools and businesses starting next week, the city said on April 11, responding to what appears to be a fresh wave of coronavirus transmissions.
Top U.S. health officials on March 2 laid out a national blueprint to manage COVID-19 going forward, vowing to prepare for any new variant outbreaks without shutting down schools and businesses and calling for additional funding from Congress.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on February 25 dramatically eased its COVID-19 guidelines for masks, including in schools, a move that means 72% of the population reside in communities where indoor face coverings are no longer recommended.
Top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said on February 16 that it is time for the United States to start inching back towards normality, despite remaining risks from COVID-19.
U.S. President Joe Biden on February 10 said mask requirements for children would likely to start to fall away given federal plans to begin vaccinating children under the age of 5, but said it was probably premature to drop COVID mask requirements entirely.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul is ending her state’s mask mandate for most indoor public places, The New York Times reported, joining several states due to lift face-covering rules as the latest COVID-19 surge eases.
With COVID-19 cases still high nationwide, “now is not the moment” to drop mask mandates in schools and other public places, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told Reuters on February 8.
Officials in New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, California and Oregon said on Feb. 7 they will lift indoor mask mandates for schools and other public places in coming weeks, seeking a return to “normalcy” as soaring COVID-19 infections fueled by the Omicron variant abate.
The Biden administration on January 12 announced a new set of measures to keep classes open, including doubling COVID-19 testing capacity in schools with 10 million more tests, as the Omicron variant spreads rapidly through the United States.
Children of the COVID era flocked back to school in various nations on January 10 as the Omicron strain spread exponentially and tennis superstar Novak Djokovic’s battle to play laid bare global passions over vaccines.