Floyd County Health Officer Thomas M. Harris MD, FACEP released the following statement today regarding the two-week extension of Floyd County’s Mask Mandate.
The outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to plague our community. In the last week, we have seen an increase in cases, despite the current mitigating measures.
The State of Indiana has slowed the reopening stages; however, our daily rate of new illnesses continues to rise.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent the illness. Measures such as hand hygiene, facial coverings, and social distancing are the most effective strategies to reduce the spread from
infected persons to noninfected persons.
Therefore, to protect public health and simply save lives, restrictions must be extended to assist in the reduction of COVID-19 transmission.
With this understanding, as the Floyd County Health Officer, I hereby order a facial covering mandate extension, pursuant to Indiana Code 16-20-1 et seq. and 16-41-9 et seq.
The order will remain in effect for an additional 2 weeks, expiring 00:01 (12:01 AM) EDT 25 September 2020.
The order may be extended depending on pandemic conditions.
Every individual must wear a facial covering over their nose and mouth when they are at:
An indoor area open to the public including public transportation
A private indoor or outdoor area where a social distance of six (6) feet from individuals
outside their households cannot be maintained
An outdoor public area where a social distance of six (6) feet from individuals outside
their household cannot be maintained
An enclosed public space or place of business.
A properly worn facial covering fully covers the individual’s mouth and nose fits snuggly against the sides of the face with no gaps, is secured to prevent slipping, and allows for breathing
with no restrictions.
All face coverings that are not disposable should be washed each day before reuse.
An adult should supervise the use of facial coverings by children age three (3)-twelve (12) to avoid misuse.
Exceptions to the policy include, but are not limited to:
Any child age two (2) or less
Any individual in respiratory distress
Any individual who is hearing impaired and needs to remove facial coverings to communicate
Any individual who has been advised, in writing, by a primary care provider that wearing a facial covering is detrimental to the individual’s health
Any individual who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the facial covering without assistance
Any individual who is directed to remove a facial covering by a law enforcement officer
Any employee engaged in work where a face covering would be deemed a hazard by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
Any restaurant or bar customer while they are dining
Any individual not in an area open to the public and where a social distance of six (6) feet can be maintained from non-household members [Ex. A single person private office]
The intent of this order is to continue to provide a safe environment for all people in Floyd County, whether engaged in work, social, or everyday activities, by extending the use of facial
coverings to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This will protect public health in Floyd County.
Nothing in this order reduces or eliminates the requirements imposed by the executive orders by Governor Holcomb or orders from other regulating governmental agencies.
This order is intended to be used to educate, encourage, and persuade people to wear facial coverings.
Citizens should continue to use frequent hand washing or sanitizing; maintain a minimum social the distance of six (6) feet; avoid touching the eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands; and most importantly, stay home and isolate yourself if you are sick.
Thomas M. Harris MD, FACEP
Floyd County Health Officer