DC Health announced yesterday that it is shifting the way it handles Covid metrics, now that the District’s community rate is classified as “low,” meaning most people are at low risk and few precautions are needed. Instead of releasing daily case numbers, reports will be issued every Wednesday. Those will include weekly case rates, rates of new hospitalizations, percentages of confirmed cases hospitalized, and percentages of hospital beds occupied by Covid patients. Vaccination data will now be released on Thursdays.
This year, DC first shifted to what the CDC considers a”low” community level the week of February 13, and DC Health reported a 90 percent drop in cases and a 95 percent reduction in hospitalizations since the height of the Omicron surge. DC’s vaccination requirements abruptly lifted on February 15th, and its indoor mask mandate for restaurants, entertainment venues, and other public spaces expired Tuesday. Masks are still required at schools, medical facilities, and libraries, and on public transportation. And private businesses can choose to require masks and vaccination records.
While residents can pick up rapid antigen tests at several libraries or get PCR tests at certain Covid centers, DC’s firehouse testing ended February 26.