DC not tightening COVID-19 restrictions just yet, but there is a warning for college students

On Monday, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said she was glad to see more jurisdictions around the District tightening their coronavirus restrictions as cases rise across the country.

“We’re happy to see that because now they’re coming more in line with where we’ve been throughout the response to the pandemic,” said Mayor Bowser.

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Cases in the District are also rising and daily spikes are at levels that haven’t been seen since back in the spring when D.C. was still under stay at home orders. However, the mayor and D.C.’s health director did not announce any rollbacks of D.C.’s coronavirus restrictions on Monday, such as lessening the number of gatherings allowed in restaurants or bars.  

Bowser and D.C. health director’s voices had more urgency, warning of Thanksgiving gatherings expected next week – and gatherings in general.

New data shared of last week’s new positive coronavirus cases said 50 percent of new female cases and 46 percent of new male cases in the last week were aged 25 to 44 years old.

The highest proportion of new cases in the last week were among adults 25 to 34 years old, according to D.C. Health Department.

Officials also said of those who tested positive, 27.9 percent (the highest percentage) reported having gone to some type of social gathering two weeks before. Going to a restaurant or bar and going to work came in a close second and third at 25.8 percent and 25.3 percent, respectively. Faith events had the lowest percentage: 3.0 percent.

Now to the anticipated Thanksgiving gatherings: D.C.’s leaders are encouraging only those within the same household to gather. Mayor Bowser advised against “gathering around” the Thanksgiving table and encouraged people to wear masks if visiting other homes.

For college students coming home, the mayor referred to the list of High-Risk States and D.C.’s travel guidelines, saying those students coming from a “hot spot” on the list should limit activity and self-monitoring for 14-days or get tested three to five days into their stay, and limit activity until they test negative.  

READ MORE: DC bar cited Friday, Saturday for mask violations amid pro-Trump crowds

This instruction to follow D.C.’s COVID-19 guidance comes after thousands protested in the District on Saturday in support of President Trump. A large number of the president’s supporters were also seen without masks.

Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt said it is optimal for people who attended Saturday events to get tested three to five days after their exposure. Dr. Nesbitt also said they can show symptoms up to 14-days after the exposure.

D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham also said the department is now looking into getting those who worked the protests on Saturday tested.