PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The City of Philadelphia moved into the All Clear COVID Response Level on Wednesday meaning the mask mandate was lifted for most indoor places.
The keyword is most.
The metrics reached the level where the Department of Public Health felt it was safe to stop enforcing the indoor mask mandate. However, masks are still required in certain places in Philadelphia, some for a shorter amount of time than others.
WATCH: Philadelphia Health Commissioner Lifts Mask Mandate
Schools in Philadelphia remain under a city mask mandate.
The city says if the metrics continue to move in the right direction, the mandatory masking in schools will end on Wednesday, March 9.
Then, the city will have a 1-week mask requirement after spring break to avoid a post-break surge in cases.
Schools include public, private, Archdiocesan, charter and early childhood education buildings in the city. Masks are optional in Archdiocesan schools in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Health Care Settings
Hospitals and other health care facilities still require masks under federal guidance.
You will still need to wear a mask if riding on SEPTA, catching a flight at Philadelphia International Airport, or taking any other mode of public transit. CDC's new COVID-19 Community Levels recommendations do not change current travel requirements, including the requirement to wear masks on public transportation and indoors in U.S. transportation hubs.
Masks will be required at city buildings until Monday, March 7. On that date, the city says masks will be optional for visitors and fully vaccinated staff.
Unvaccinated staff will still be required to wear two masks while indoors and around others.
Businesses and Institutions
While the city's COVID Response Levels lifted the indoor mask mandate, businesses and other institutions are allowed to be stricter than the All Clear status dictates. This means some businesses can still require proof of vaccination or mask-wearing while you're at their establishments.
Choosing to Wear a Mask
The city says those who want to continue to wear a mask for extra protection against COVID-19 can do so.
"There's nothing wrong with this and these people do not deserve harassment. Some may have a family member that is at high-risk, some may be sick and are actually protecting you, and some may just want to be safe. All of those, and more, are valid reasons to keep wearing masks," the city says.
The health department is reminding residents that the pandemic is not over.
If a new COVID variant were to come to Philadelphia or cases started to rise again, the city may move to the Mask Precautions Level or higher and start enforcing the public mandates again.