Philadelphia Lifts Indoor Mask Mandate Enacted Four Days Ago
City's Board of Health voted during a Thursday night meeting to rescind the mandate
FRIDAY, April 22, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- The indoor mask mandate that was reinstated in Philadelphia on Monday due to rising COVID-19 cases has now been lifted because the situation is improving, the city's health department said Thursday.
The city's Board of Health voted during a Thursday night meeting to rescind the mandate, according to the Philadelphia health department, which released a statement that cited "decreasing hospitalizations and a leveling of case counts," the Associated Press reported.
The health department did not release data backing a reversal on masking, which became effective Friday morning. But acting health commissioner Cheryl Bettigole, M.D., told the Board of Health at the meeting that hospitalizations had unexpectedly gone down 25 percent in a matter of days, the AP said.
"We're in a situation that we really had not anticipated being in this soon but it is good news," Bettigole said. "So I'm really very happy to say it appears that we no longer need to mandate masks in Philadelphia and that we can actually move to simply a strong recommendation [for indoor masking]."