The sad reality is that all across America more people are getting infected with COVID-19, more are being hospitalized, more are going into intensive care, and more people are dying. We are in a war right now, and the virus is winning.
While Maryland is still much better than most of the country, we are now seeing widespread community transmission in every corner of our state. This week, I announced the following actions to prevent overburdening the state’s healthcare system and to keep more Marylanders from dying:
- 10 PM closure of bars and restaurants. All bars, restaurants, and venues serving food and alcohol must close between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., except for the purposes of carryout and delivery.
- Limited capacity for retail establishments. All retail establishments and religious facilities must reduce operations to 50% capacity.
- Additional hospital surge measures. All hospital visitation is prohibited until further notice with some exceptions—including end-of-life care, obstetrics, parents or guardians of minors, and support for people with disabilities.
- Additional measures to protect nursing homes. Until further notice, indoor visitation at Maryland nursing homes is generally limited to compassionate care, and all visitors must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours prior to their visit.
- Maryland’s statewide masking order remains in full force and effect. Marylanders are required to wear masks or face coverings in the public spaces of all public and private businesses, when using public transportation, and at all outdoor public areas whenever it is not possible to maintain physical distancing.
Now more than ever, I am pleading with the people of our state to stand together a while longer to help us battle this surging virus. Your family and friends are counting on you, your neighbors are counting on you, and your fellow Marylanders are counting on you to stay “Maryland Strong.”