Masks Required in Indoor Public Spaces starting August 16th

Jefferson County Public Health Friday, August 13, 2021

Everyone aged 5 and older in Jefferson and Clallam Counties must wear a face covering in indoor public spaces, regardless of their vaccination status, according to a new masking order issued today by Dr. Allison Berry, Health Officer for Jefferson and Clallam Counties.

The order will go into effect Monday, August 16th and applies to all businesses and government offices within the two counties. Masks are not required but are recommended in outdoor settings where large groups are gathering close together. Masks are additionally not required but are recommended for children between the ages of 2 and 5.

The new masking order comes in response to the alarming growth in COVID-19 cases in the region and the rise of the highly infectious Delta Variant. In Jefferson County, COVID-19 case rates have quadrupled in the last month from 47 to 197 cases per 100,000 residents. In neighboring Clallam County, case rates have risen five-fold from 63 to an unprecedented 333 cases per 100,000 residents.

 “Jefferson and Clallam Counties are experiencing the highest rates of COVID-19 transmission that we ever have in this pandemic,” Dr. Berry said. “We are at a critical juncture and we must act fast to control transmission of this virus to keep our communities safe and functioning.”

Masks along with vaccination remain the most effective methods we have to control the COVID-19 pandemic. Both are safe and highly effective at preventing transmission, hospitalization and death from the COVID-19 virus. In Washington State, 94% of hospitalizations and deaths in 2021 due to COVID-19 were among the unvaccinated.

69% of Jefferson County residents have completed vaccination against COVID-19. Even though that percentage is one of the highest in the state, it still means that thousands of our neighbors, friends, family, and co-workers, especially young children and those whose immune systems cannot fully respond to the vaccine, remain vulnerable to infection from COVID-19 and its variants.

“We must come together to build our community resilience against this virus,” urged Dr. Berry. “That means using all the highly effective tools that we have at our disposal now. It is not too late. If you get vaccinated today, you will protect yourself, your family, and your community in the weeks to come. If you put a mask on today, you will make a difference today.”

For more information about the COVID vaccine, including where to find a clinic near you, visit https://www.jeffersoncountypublichealth.org/1529/COVID-19-Vaccine