'Fresno Is Not Flattening The Curve' - County Recommends Masks As Some Businesses Reopen

May 21, 2020

Fresno County’s Public Health Department announced a county-wide mask recommendation this week that takes effect Friday. Officials say it’s one more layer of protection as the county starts to reopen.

At a media update Wednesday afternoon, Interim Health Officer Dr. Rais Vohra compared wearing masks to using speed bumps, helmets, and seatbelts. 

"These are all things when they were first introduced appeared to be very inconvenient, but over time, proved to save lives,” said Vohra. “Now, we really can’t imagine life without them.”

On Monday, Governor Gavin Newsom updated the metrics counties must meet to reopen some businesses and Fresno barely meets them. The County has, however, requested to reopen dine-in restaurants and other businesses with modifications, which Vohra said will be safer with masks.

“Fresno is not flattening the curve,” said Vohra. “We’re still pretty borderline, even with the looser attestation metrics, on the requirements that we need to meet to move into Phase 2.”

While the masking order is not mandated, Vohra said it’s highly encouraged, and he expects to see national guidance about masks soon. As of Wednesday afternoon, the county confirmed 1,338 cases and 20 deaths.