DC will require proof of vaccination at restaurants, gyms and several other types of establishments as the daily number of COVID-19 cases reaches dramatic new highs, the mayor said on Wednesday.
The district has requested help from the DC National Guard to assemble self-test kits, Mayor Muriel Bowser also said at a press conference on Wednesday.
Proof of vaccination will be required from January 15 in restaurants, bars, nightclubs, “indoor cultural and entertainment facilities”, “indoor exercise and recreation facilities” and “indoor event and meeting facilities. “.
Customers 12 years of age and older will need to prove they received a dose on or after January 15. They will have to prove from February 15 that they are fully vaccinated.
The requirement will not apply to people entering grocery stores, places of worship or museums, said Patrick Ashley, senior deputy director of DC Health. The rule targets indoor places where people congregate.
Customers can show their vaccination cards, a copy or photo of it, a printout of their vaccination record or their information in a COVID-19 verification app, such as VaxYes or CLEAR.
All DC students – including those in DC public schools, charter schools, and private schools – who are eligible for COVID-19 vaccines must show proof of vaccination by March 1. The DC council passed a law earlier this month requiring vaccinations.
Students will have 70 days from their eligibility date to be vaccinated. The application will start during the school year 2022-2023, according to the presentation of the mayor.
The daily rate of COVID-19 cases in DC is nine times higher than it was 30 days ago, Ashley said. DC had 13.7 cases per 100,000 population a month ago and currently has 123.8 cases for that amount of population.
So far, 25 cases of the omicron variant have been confirmed as DC Labs are working to confirm another 50 possible cases.
The district recorded an average of more than 1,200 new cases of the virus on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, according to the most recent data. The daily case rate was below 350 a few weeks earlier.
DC reinstated its indoor mask tenure on Tuesday. Face coverings are mandatory in offices, gymnasiums, stores, places of entertainment, places of worship, restaurants (except for people who actively eat or drink) and other establishments.
Masks have been demanded in schools, health facilities and on public transport, and these demands will continue.
Bowser declared a new public health emergency on Monday, saying there was a need to tackle the new cases, hospitalizations and deaths.
The mayor said she understands the fatigue of many residents with COVID safety precautions.
“I think we’re all sick of it. I’m sick of it too. But we have to react to what is happening in our city and what is happening in our country, ”she said.
Stick with NBC Washington for more details on this developing story.