Winnebago County Health Department recommends indoor masking for everyone

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 5:48 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - With less than half of the eligible population in Winnebago County fully vaccinated, the Winnebago County Health Department now recommends everyone, regardless of vaccination status to wear a mask indoors in areas of substantial or high transmission of COVID-19.

This comes as the Centers for Disease Control changes its mask recommendations that even vaccinated people wear masks indoors in parts of the U.S. where COVID-19 is surging or where vaccination rates are low.

Officials with the Winnebago County Health Department say there is a “substantial” risk for transmission of COVID-19 among the unvaccinated including children under the age of 12 who are not eligible for vaccination. This is the category set by the CDC.

The health department says the recommendation comes as the COVID-19 positivity rate is up to 6.2 percent and hospitals have declining ICU bed availability. As of Wednesday, 23 people in the county were hospitalized with COVID-19, up from 17 the previous week.

Officials say, “The pandemic is not over and we must continue to be vigilant in our individual behaviors and our collective behaviors as a community.”

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