Philadelphia to lift final COVID restrictions, including indoor mask mandate, on Friday

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- As of Friday, Philadelphia will end its last two COVID-19 restrictions: the indoor mask mandate and the 11:00 p.m. last call for restaurants.

According to officials, people who received their final dose of COVID vaccine at least two weeks ago are considered fully vaccinated, and the Health Department will no longer requires that they wear masks indoors or outdoors in most settings.

"For nearly fifteen months, the City of Philadelphia has had restrictions in place to protect each other, and I have no doubt that these restrictions saved countless lives," said Mayor Jim Kenney. "But Friday will be a day that we've all been looking forward to: getting back to doing the things that we love. Thanks to the more than two-thirds of adults who've been vaccinated already, we can finally do the things that we've missed doing for the last year."

People who are not vaccinated or are not fully vaccinated are still strongly recommended to wear masks indoors and outdoors when around others but are no longer required to do so by city officials.

"Lifting the requirement for vaccinated people to wear masks indoors doesn't mean that we are totally past COVID-19. Dozens of Philadelphians are still being diagnosed with COVID-19 every day, which means that more of us still need to get vaccinated," said Acting Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl Bettigole.

Due to ongoing risk, Philadelphia will still require that masks be worn indoors in select settings, including but not limited to:

- Healthcare institutions including temporary community healthcare events such as vaccine clinics and blood drives
- Congregate facilities such as prisons, shelters, and adult day programs
- Public transportation including planes, trains, buses, taxis, and ride share vehicles
- Indoor schools, camps and early childhood education

Last month, health officials in Pennsylvania announced that the rest of the state will completely lift its ask order June 28, or possibly sooner, if 70% of residents get their second dose of vaccine.

"After reviewing the vaccination data for people 18 and over and discussing it with the COVID-19 Vaccine Legislative Task Force, we have determined that the commonwealth's mask order can be lifted on June 28 or when 70% of adults get their second dose, whichever comes first," Acting Secretary Alison Beam said.

As of Wednesday morning, 52% of Philadelphia residents 18+ and 56.3% of Pennsylvania residents 18+ were fully vaccinated.
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