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Mask Wearing Rules and Recommendations

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Indoor Mask Wearing Rules and Recommendations for LA County Ver página en Español

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has updated requirements and recommendations for masking for the general public in public indoor settings. The requirements and recommendations are outlined below and are effective on March 13, 2023. They are based on updates to the California Department of Public Health’s guidance on isolation and quarantine of the general public.

Please note that in workplace settings, employers must follow the Cal/OSHA COVID-19 Prevention – Non-Emergency Regulations.

YOU* MUST wear a well-fitting mask:

  • In healthcare settings, including long-term care settings and adult/senior care facilities.
  • If it is required by the site, including some business, schools, and workplaces.
  • If it is required by Public Health for managing an outbreak, including in workplaces and congregate settings.
  • If you have COVID-19 and must be around others until you end isolation. This includes when you are at home. If you are eligible to end isolation, continue to wear a mask around others from Day 6 through Day 10. The exception is that if you have two sequential negative COVID-19 tests taken at least a day apart you do not need to wear a mask. Follow all the isolation instructions at ph.lacounty.gov/covidisolation.
    NOTE: In workplace settings, workers who test positive for COVID-19 must wear a well-fitting mask after they return to work through Day 10.

It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED that you wear a well-fitting mask:
(Unless required – see You must wear a mask above)

  • If you are a close contact to someone with COVID-19 for 10 days from the last day that you were exposed. This is especially important when around those at higher risk for severe COVID-19 disease. Follow all the instructions for close contacts at ph.lacounty.gov/covidcontacts.
  • If you are at risk for severe illness, especially when you are in crowded or poorly ventilated places. Wear your most protective mask, such as a respirator (N95, KN95, KF94).
  • On all forms of public transit, including trains, buses, shuttle buses, taxis, ride-shares, and medical transport.
  • In all transportation hubs, including airport and bus terminals, train and subway stations, seaports or other indoor port terminals, or any other indoor area that serves as a transportation hub.

INDIVIDUAL PREFERENCE whether you wear a mask:
(Unless required – see You must wear a mask above)

  • In state and local correctional facilities and detention centers
  • In homeless and emergency shelters
  • In any other public settings

No one can be prevented from wearing a mask to participate in an activity or enter a business.

Note: When masks are required, you are allowed to take off your mask while you are:

  • Actively eating or drinking.
  • Alone in a separate room or space.
  • Showering or swimming.
  • Receiving medical, dental, cosmetic, personal hygiene or personal care services (like a facial or shave) that cannot be done without removing your mask.
  • Receiving or providing a speech, occupational or language therapy session where temporary removal of the mask is necessary, as determined by the therapy provider.

*There are some people who should not wear a mask, such as children younger than 2, people with certain medical conditions or disabilities, and people instructed by their medical provider not to wear a mask. See Who should not wear a mask and Special considerations for persons with communication difficulties or certain disabilities.  

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Public Health has made reasonable efforts to provide accurate translation. However, no computerized translation is perfect and is not intended to replace traditional translation methods. If questions arise concerning the accuracy of the information, please refer to the English edition of the website, which is the official version.

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