Public Health Madison & Dane County (PHMDC) released Face Covering Emergency Order No. 2, necessitating facial coverings in indoor, public spaces. The office cites a rise in COVID-19 cases due to the highly infectious Delta variant as the reason for releasing a new order after the first order was released on Aug. 17 and set to expire on Sept. 16.
According to the emergency order, “The rate of cases in Dane County has risen rapidly since the Delta variant became dominant; on July 19, our 7-day average number of cases was 19, and on August 12, the 7-day average increased by 382% to 91.6. Since August 12, the rate of increase has slowed, but the 7- day average still increased by 13% to 103.9.”
PHMDC also states that COVID-19 cases have increased in unvaccinated community members by 21% from Aug. 8 to Sept. 4, whereas cases in vaccinated community members are reported as “stable.”
The new emergency order includes two new exceptions to the face covering requirement:
- When playing a wood instrument with a fabric bell that acts as a face covering over the instrument as long as individuals are six feet apart.
- While presenting or performing a religious, political, media, educational, artistic, cultural, musical, theatrical or other types of presentations for an audience as long as the audience is fully vaccinated and the presenter maintains six feet from all attendees.
The emergency order will be in effect from Sept. 10 to Oct. 8.