HARRISBURG, Pa. - Pennsylvania has set an end date for the statewide mask mandate.
The mask order will be lifted by June 28, or when 70% of adults are fully vaccinated, whichever comes first, announced state Acting Health Secretary Alison Beam during a news conference Thursday.
It comes a day after the state hit a milestone of 70% of adults getting at least one dose of the vaccine. About 53% of Pennsylvanians 18 and older are fully vaccinated, as of Thursday.
State officials had previously said the mask order wouldn't be lifted until 70% of Pennsylvania adults were fully vaccinated.
Beam said even when the mask mandate is lifted, certain businesses and settings, like hospitals, may continue to require masks. The state will also follow the CDC's guidance which currently requires a mask for travel on planes, buses, trains and other public transportation.
All of the state's COVID-19 mitigation orders, except for the mask order, will be lifted on Memorial Day.
Beam says the DOH has no intention of making vaccinations mandatory.
“School districts and schools actually have their own right to do that if they choose to,” Beam added.
Pennsylvania has also reached another milestone when it comes to vaccinating its older and more vulnerable residents.
“According to the CDC, nearly 98% of Pennsylvanians over 65-years-old have received at least one dose of vaccine,” Beam said.