Nevada County Public Health Officer Dr. Scott Kellermann has amended his August 18th order on face coverings to include further mandates for crowded outdoor settings and large events. The order becomes effective at 12:01 a.m. on August 27, 2021.
In addition to last week’s requirements for face coverings indoors, the amended order:
- Requires that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear face coverings outdoors in crowded settings.
- Prohibits indoor and outdoor gatherings or events where 2,500 or more people will be in attendance, until further notice.
- Requires that events with 500 attendees or more develop and implement a plan to verify vaccination status, or proof of a negative test preferably within the 24 hours of the event but no longer than 72 hours prior to the event.
Nevada County is experiencing an unprecedented number of COVID-19 cases admitted to its two hospitals. As of August 24, 2021, Nevada County’s case rate was 49.1 cases per day per 100,000 and the test positivity rate was 12.0%, one of the highest in California.
The hospitals in Nevada County are at capacity, and all hospitals in the region are reaching their inpatient limit. There is very limited capacity for transferring patients within the region. Regional emergency departments have been overwhelmed with patients seeking diagnosis and care for COVID-19 to the point where those with other emergency conditions are finding delayed care or having to go elsewhere for help.
Rising case rates, increasing test positivity, and the high numbers of hospitalizations are largely due to the predominance of the highly infectious Delta variant, which has been labeled as “younger, sicker, quicker.” The Delta variant is highly contagious and may have increased the risk of hospitalization compared to the original virus.
Large gatherings will lead to further spread of COVID-19, creating an additional burden for the medical system in Nevada County.
“The steps we’re taking today are the limit the spread of the virus in our community,” Kellermann said of the amended order. “The Delta variant is highly transmissible, but there are simple ways to protect ourselves and those we love. Mask up indoors and out, avoid gatherings, and if you can, get vaccinated as soon as possible.”