Indoor masking recommended by CDC for Lycoming County

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended a return to indoor masking in Lycoming County — even among the fully vaccinated — as of Thursday.

Lycoming County recently passed the CDC threshold of “substantial transmission,” meaning that the weekly COVID-19 case rate is between 50 and 100 cases per 100,000 people, or the weekly positivity rate is between 8% and 10%, according to the county COVID-19 Hub, found at https://lycoming-county-pa-covid-19-lyco.hub.arcgis.com/.

As of Thursday, the seven-day case rate was 57.4 per 100,000 people in the county, well above the statewide average of 44.1 per 100,000.

This is up from just 3.5 cases per 100,000 from mid-July, according to the Lycoming County COVID-19 Hub.

Using data from the Lycoming County COVID-19 Hub, the average daily increase in cases since Aug. 1 is 11.8, more than 10 times the average daily increase from the same time period starting July 1 (1.2).

The CDC recommends wearing masks at indoor public settings regardless of vaccination status in areas with “substantial” or “high” transmission rates.

“Infections happen in only a small proportion of people who are fully vaccinated, even with the Delta variant,” according to the CDC. “However, preliminary evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people who do become infected with the Delta variant can spread the virus to others.”

This, coupled with the CDC’s claim that the Delta variant is the “predominant” strain in the U.S. now, leads to updated guidelines, such as evolving masking recommendations.

More than two dozen counties in Pennsylvania have been identified as having “substantial” or higher transmission, with neighboring Potter County crossing into “high” transmission territory, according to the CDC. Nearly 50,000 people in Lycoming County have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to the state Department of Health.


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