Kern County remains in the Orange Tier (Tier 3) of the COVID-19 Blueprint for a Safer Economy.
Every county is assigned to one of four tiers based on the adjusted case rate, testing positivity rate, and health equity metric. As of Tuesday, June 8th, Kern County’s adjusted case rates were 2.2 per 100 thousand, a rate that is down from last week’s rates of 2.4 per 100 thousand. The county’s testing positivity rate is equal to last week’s rating of 1.6 percent.
In order to move up to the Yellow Tier, Kern County would have to meet the less restrictive metrics for two consecutive weeks. Because of this, Kern will be unable to move to the Yellow Tier before the State retires the COVID-19 Blueprint for a Safer Economy next week on June 15th.
“When the blueprint is retired on June 15th, everyday life will feel a lot like before COVID-19 with most places being open and returning to usual operation with no capacity limitations or social distancing requirements,” Brynn Carrigan, Director of Kern County’s Public Health Services, stated at the Board of Supervisor’s meeting.
Indoor events with more than 5,000 people, also known as “mega-events” will require verified fully vaccinated status or pre-entry negative COVID-19 tests, along with masks for those that aren’t vaccinated.
These requirements will remain in place until at least October 1st while the State continues to monitor COVID-19 vaccination and infection rates.
Last week, the Kern County Public Health Services Department attended a call with the California Department of Public Health where they discussed masking beyond June 15th and a draft guidance with three categories:
- Where masking is required regardless of vaccination status
- Where masking is required for unvaccinated individuals
- Where masking is recommended for unvaccinated individuals
According to this draft document, masking will be required regardless of vaccination status in the following settings:
- Public transit and transportation hubs
- Healthcare facilities
- Long-term care facilities
- Homeless shelters
- Cooling centers
Masking will be required for unvaccinated individuals in the following settings:
- K-12 schools in indoor settings
- Childcare in indoor settings
- Indoor mega-events
Masking will be recommended in the following settings:
- Indoor settings for unvaccinated individuals
- Retail, restaurants, places of worship, theaters, family entertainment centers, meetings, local governmental offices serving the public
- Outdoor settings for unvaccinated individuals where physical distancing cannot be met
- Crowds, high-contact sports, live events and performances, parades
Masking will be optional in all other settings. This masking discussion is only in draft form and is subject to change prior to implementation next week.