Montgomery County COVID-19 metrics moving in the right direction

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MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) — Montgomery County’s COVID-19 health metrics are trending in the right direction, health officials say. If those metrics continue that trend, the county’s nearly 1.1 million residents could soon see the indoor mask mandate lifted.

The county is seeing fewer than two percent of tests come back positive, but a few things need to happen for the mask mandate to go away.

Health officials are looking for cases per 100,000 to fall into the moderate transmission category and stay there for seven days. Right now, the county is still in the substantial transmission category, but the numbers are inching closer to meeting that moderate benchmark.

“[Dr. James Bridgers] would send a message to the council, and we’d say it publicly that ‘today is the first day of moderate transmission.’ When the seventh day arrives, then Dr. Bridgers would send another note to the council saying ‘at this time tomorrow the mask mandate would be lifted,'” said Dr. Earl Stoddard, the county’s assistant chief administrative officer and former head of the county’s Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

If at any point during that seven-day period the numbers tick back up into the substantial transmission category, the seven-day period would restart again when numbers fall back into the moderate category.

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