Carney lifting COVID state of emergency July 13

Modification to order will also loosen mask requirements for school staff, students

By Tim Mastro
Posted 6/15/21

WILMINGTON – Gov. John Carney announced Tuesday that he intends to lift the COVID-19 State of Emergency Order on July 13.

Gov. Carney first signed the emergency order on March 12, 2020 to …

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Carney lifting COVID state of emergency July 13

Modification to order will also loosen mask requirements for school staff, students

Posted

WILMINGTON — Delaware’s COVID-19 State of Emergency Order will end on July 13, Gov. John Carney announced Tuesday.
The order was first signed on March 12, 2020, to help curb the spread of the virus. When it expires on July 13, it will have lasted 16 months and one day.

July 13 is nine days after the state’s target date of July 4 for 70% of its adult population to be vaccinated. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 68.3% of adult Delawareans have received at least one dose.

To reach 70% by July 4, Gov. Carney said the state needs about 13,000 more adults to receive their vaccines to achieve the remaining 1.7%. The CDC total includes Delawareans vaccinated out of state and vaccinations done at Dover Air Force Base and Veterans Affairs who do not report their numbers to the Delaware Division of Public Health.

While Gov. Carney has been citing CDC numbers for reaching the state’s 70 percent goal, the state’s online data shows only numbers of vaccinations reported to the division. Therefore, the online tracker is slightly lower than the CDC’s. Tuesday it showed that 53.2% percent of adults were vaccinated.

Delaware’s emergency order will be lifted a week after some surrounding states. Maryland’s is scheduled to expire on July 1 while New Jersey will lift its order July 4.

Gov. Carney said there is not much significance on how the state decided on July 13.

“These extensions work in 30-day cycles,” he said. “It’s the end of the 30-day cycle, which coincides with July 13 and all the other things we want to see to make sure we’re in a good place.”

Gov. Carney had already removed most restrictions from the emergency order, including a mask mandate, in May. Those who are unvaccinated are still strongly encouraged to wear a mask in accordance with guidance from the CDC after the emergency order ends.

Gov. Carney signed a modification Tuesday that makes technical changes to the emergency order’s 29th modification.

Educators and staff in schools and child care centers are not required to wear masks when children are not present, per the new modification. Students and staff also are not required to wear masks outdoors.

Some sectors will still require masks to be worn even after the order expires, such as prisons and transportation.

“The key thing going forward is for people to recognize that while there won’t be mandates for mask-wearing, there will be venues that will require masks to be worn,” Gov. Carney said.

The DPH reported just 13 new positive cases of COVID-19 in Tuesday’s daily update — the lowest since the first few days of the pandemic in mid-March of 2020 when testing was less prevalent.

The number of individuals hospitalized with the virus is at 34, one of the lowest totals of all-time, but 10 higher than the all-time low of 24 set this weekend. There were no new COVID-19-related deaths announced as that number remained at 1,679.

As Delaware’s case numbers decrease, Gov. Carney continued to encourage vaccinations. There have been 416,116 Delawareans who have been fully vaccinated in the state, which does not include Dover Air Force Base and Delawareans vaccinated out of state.

“I think people say, ‘Well, it must be over. I don’t have to get vaccinated now,’” he said. “That’s just not the case. The numbers are small, but it’s 20 tomorrow, 40 the next day. That one person might be you and we just don’t know the long-term impacts. You might give it to somebody who’s at great risk. People are still dying. It’s just not a public health emergency right, but it is still critically important to take care of yourself and your loved ones.”

For all individuals fully vaccinated in Delaware, that number is up to 459,774. This includes non-residents who are eligible to be vaccinated in Delaware because they either work or their health care here.

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