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Pennsylvania lifting all COVID-19 mitigation orders except masking on Memorial Day

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Pennsylvania will lift all COVID-19 mitigation orders except for the masking order on Memorial Day, Gov. Tom Wolf's administration announced Tuesday.

Capacity restrictions on bars, restaurants and indoor and outdoor gatherings will go away on May 31, more than a year into the pandemic.

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"The current order requiring Pennsylvanians to wear masks will be lifted when 70% of Pennsylvanians age 18 and older are fully vaccinated," the state Department of Health said. "Face coverings are required to be worn indoors and outdoors if you are away from your home."

The percentage of vaccinated Pennsylvania residents stood at nearly 42% on Tuesday, according to federal data, while 63% of those 18 and older had at least one dose.

Pennsylvania revised its masking order last week to bring it in line with new federal recommendations that say fully vaccinated people don’t have to wear them outside anymore unless they're at a crowded event.

"We continue to make significant progress in the fight to stop the spread of COVID-19 and as more Pennsylvania adults get vaccinated and guidance from the CDC evolves, we can continue to move forward with our reopening efforts," Department of Health Acting Secretary Alison Beam said. "I encourage Pennsylvanians to take the critical steps needed to put this pandemic behind us by getting vaccinated, follow through with both doses if you receive the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines, and continue to take steps like masking, frequent hand washing and sanitizing and social distancing."

Requirements such as testing and reporting ​new cases will remain in place for hospitals and long-term care facilities. Maintaining requirements for hospitals and long-term care facilities wi​ll allow Pennsylvania to continue to closely monitor COVID-19 spread while lifting other restrictions.

The Department of Health recommends that Pennsylvania residents refer to CDC guidance and recommendations regarding ongoing COVID-19 safety measures and procedures.

These updates will not prevent municipalities and school districts from ​continuing and implementing stricter mitigation efforts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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