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Oklahoma City’s mask ordinance has led to a significant drop in new coronavirus infections, the city’s mayor, David Holt, said Thursday.
Caseloads in the Oklahoma City metro area were surging dramatically when the city council approved a mask mandate on July 17, requiring face coverings in all indoor public spaces. A month later, the number of new cases reported each day has plummeted. Hospitalizations have leveled off and on Thursday reached their lowest level since July 1.
“Just like clockwork, about a week ago, we began to see the decline in the cases and the hospitalizations,” Holt, a Republican, told KFOR. “Over the course of this last week, we’ve seen cases drop about a third here in Oklahoma City, and we have seen hospitalizations drop about 20 percent.”
The timing of the decline makes clear “there is absolutely nothing else you can attribute that to but the mask ordinance,” the mayor added. In a Facebook post, he noted that the encouraging numbers come from the entire Oklahoma City metro area, which spans three counties and includes many other smaller cities. But the data “speaks for itself,” he wrote, telling residents, “Masking is working.”
Many other Oklahoma communities introduced their own mask mandates around the same time that Oklahoma City did, which seems to have had an impact statewide. The seven-day average of new cases has been declining since the start of August, according to KOCO.
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