Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Mask mandates are returning to Santa Clara County 😷

If you thought that mandatory government-mandated masking was over, then like myself you probably didn't read the most recent order by the Health Officer of the County of Santa Clara very carefully. On April 4th, 2023, mandatory masking was officially lifted in Santa Clara County. HOWEVER, masking is mandated for healthcare facilities during designated winter respiratory virus periods.

When are these winter respiratory virus periods? November 1st to March 31st of each year, a 5-month period which can be extended based on the discretion of the Health Officer. Punishments for violations, sound severe.

Right now this only applies to healthcare facilities, but this is a slippery slope that could lead to overreach into other areas and could open a door back to pandemic-style life. Would schools be next? Restaurants? Local businesses? 

Even within a healthcare setting, surely there should be some flexibility at the discretion of the facility. I'll give a personal example. My wife was in labor for 43 hours shortly after the mask mandates were lifted in April. I can't imagine how much more agonizing that would have been having to wear masks throughout the entire process.

I say this as someone who has had five COVID shots--the OG Pfizer duo, two boosters, and the bivalent... in other words, the works. I call it the Long Island Iced Tea of vaccinations.

What are your thoughts? Do we need to bring the mark requirements back or let organizations decide which policies work best for them and their constituents?

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