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Philadelphia to restore indoor mask mandate as cases rise

FILE - A sign requiring masks as a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus on a store...
FILE - A sign requiring masks as a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus on a store front in Philadelphia, is seen Feb. 16, 2022.(Matt Rourke | AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
Published: Apr. 12, 2022 at 7:43 AM CDT
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(AP) - Philadelphia has become the first major U.S. city to reinstate its indoor mask mandate after reporting a sharp increase in coronavirus infections.

The city’s top health official said Monday she wants to forestall a potential new wave driven by the omicron subvariant. Dr. Cheryl Bettigole says that COVID-19 cases in the city have risen more than 50% in 10 days.

That’s the threshold at which the city’s guidelines call for people to wear masks indoors. Health inspectors will start enforcing the mask mandate at city businesses starting April 18.

Most states and cities dropped their masking requirements in February and early March. In Dane Co., the mandate ended at the beginning of last month when the most recent health order expired.

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