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Health secretary signs order making mask wearing mandatory

July 1, 2020 News Extra

State officials revised and expanded orders on wearing masks Wednesday to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“This mask-wearing order is essential to stopping the recent increase in COVID-19 cases we have seen in Pennsylvania,” Gov. Tom Wolf said.

While Wolf commented through a news release Wednesday, state Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed a new order that says “masks must be worn whenever anyone leaves home.”

The order takes effect immediately and expands on the former order, which required masks when entering businesses and other enclosed spaces.

After weeks of Pennsylvania averaging between 350 to 500 cases, recent new case totals have hovered between 500 and 600. The total number of cases added to Pennsylvania's total Wednesday was 636.

The order, which is available online, outlines situations when a mask must be worn and includes limited exceptions to the face-covering requirement.

According to data released Wednesday by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Butler County saw three new cases added to its total confirmed case count of 278. The county has 33 cases listed as probable, which have pending test results. The county's death toll remained at 13.

Read more in Thursday's Butler Eagle.