As more and more states have begun to lift their mask mandates, officials at the Department of Public Health and Social Services report Guam has not reached the benchmark necessary to lift them locally.
PNC’s Devin Eligio has the story…
Citizens across the U.S. are taking off their masks as mask mandates are lifted across the country with Hawaii, the only state that has not lifted their mask restrictions, yet to follow the continental U.S.
States such as California issued an update that as of March 11th, the universal masking requirement for K-12 and Childcare settings will terminate.
However, the same cannot be said about Guam as public health officials advise that we are not at that level of safety yet.
Public health officials such as Dr. Bob Leon Guerrero and Senior Epidemiologist for the State Epidemiological Outcomes Work Group Dr. Annete David shared that we are getting to that point of lifting mask mandates, but are still lagging behind other states in the U.S.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidelines and metrics that suggested that masks no longer need to be worn indoors.
These guidelines are based on community levels ranging from low to high and are determined by hospital beds being used, hospital admissions, and the total number of new COVID-19 cases in a single area.
While Dr. Ann Pobustky, Territorial Epidemiologist of Public Health, described a decrease in cases and deaths related to COVID, Guam is still not fit to lift the mask mandates.
The CDC advised that although guidelines and restrictions are being eased, it is still commendable to wear a mask despite vaccination status. Dr. David emphasized the continued importance of the mask.