Better mask up Yakima says Governor Jay Inslee. The governor on Saturday announced he's getting ready to issue a proclamation making masks mandatory when in public in Yakima County. He says the proclamation could be issued as soon as Monday meaning businesses that are open must post a no mask no service policy at the entrance.
Inslee is responding to the growing COVID-19 numbers in Yakima County saying that Yakima's rate is 28 times higher than what's needed to move to phase 2. Health officials say the county is seeing 700 cases per 100,000 people making the per-capita rate the highest in the west. Hospitals in the valley are overwhelmed as well. A news release from the Yakima Health District says the three hospitals are all dealing with staffing shortages because of the number of growing cases.
The news release says "not only do we have the highest rate of COVID-19 infections, but as of Friday, Yakima County represented 22% (61 of 242) of all hospitalized COVID-19 patients in Washington State. This was more than King County, the most populous county in Washington State. Yakima County COVID-19 patients also represented 24% (11 of 46) of all ventilated COVID-19 patients in the State, which is the same as King County."
So to help stop the spread the governor says it's time to mask up to open up Yakima.