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Gov. Wolf says mask mandate could be in effect until a COVID-19 vaccine is developed

An outdoor mask mandate went into effect July 1st.
Credit: Fox43

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Governor Tom Wolf said at a press conference Monday that mask wearing could continue until a COVID-19 vaccine is developed. 

“I’m sort of thinking this [mask wearing] is until we get a vaccine," said Gov. Wolf. "But I don’t have any real formal goal there."

On July 1, Governor Tom Wolf announced an order, signed by Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine, requiring masks to be worn whenever anyone leaves home when social distancing is not possible. Studies have shown wearing a mask can help reduce the spread of the virus. 

RELATED: Three Central Pennsylvania Doctors weigh in on mask wearing effectiveness against COVID-19

"This is something that actually does make you safer. When I’m wearing a mask makes me safer when you’re wearing a mask, and if we can’t practice social distancing that’s a really important thing," said Gov. Wolf. "Models suggest that states, areas, where people wear masks the infection rate is actually lower. So, this is something that, as we get into infectious disease, and who knows when this is going to end, we probably ought to be thinking about this just to keep each other safe.”

As Pennsylvania sees a slight uptick in COVID-19 cases, Gov. Wolf again encouraged Pennsylvanias to continue wearing masks.