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JUST IN: Local Coronavirus Cases Reach Lowest Point Since July As CDC Reveals New Mask Guidance

(Updated at 4 p.m.) A total of 75 new coronavirus cases have been reported in Arlington over the past week, after four straight days of single-digit case counts.

That’s the lowest trailing seven-day case total since July 26, 2020, and the first four-day streak of single-digit cases since late June 2020. It comes as new COVID-19 cases are declining in 37 states, including Virginia, while no states are seeing rising cases.

“America’s battle against the coronavirus is going great,” Axios reported today. “The U.S. is finally winning its battle against COVID-19 thanks almost exclusively to one weapon: the vaccines.”

In Arlington, nearly 200,000 vaccine doses have been administered and 86,534 people are now fully vaccinated, according to the latest Virginia Dept. of Health data.

About 52% of the overall county population has received at least one dose. Just over 2,000 doses are being administered each day, on average, though that figure has fallen from a peak of more than 3,500 daily doses in late April.

Starting Saturday, the county will offer free vaccinations to children ages 12-15, who are newly eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine.

“This is a critical milestone in our pandemic response. We encourage all parents to get their children vaccinated when they become eligible,” Arlington Public Health Director Dr. Reuben Varghese said in a press release Wednesday. “The vaccine is the best form of protection against COVID-19. The more people protected, the better it is for ourselves and for our community.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, announced new mask recommendations this afternoon, advising that fully vaccinated individuals no longer need to wear masks or physically distance indoors or outdoors, in most circumstances.

“If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic,” said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.

A spokeswoman said Arlington County is waiting for additional guidance from the state before making any changes in response to the CDC.

“We are reviewing the newly-released CDC recommendations while also awaiting guidance from the Virginia Department of Health,” county spokeswoman Jessica Baxter told ARLnow.

Despite the good news, incidents of serious illness from Covid infections have not let up. Seven Covid-related hospitalizations have been reported in Arlington over the past week, including two new hospitalizations today.

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Join us as we explore Vini Franchetti & their two sister vineyards Passopisciaro (Sicily) and Vini Franchetti (Tuscany) for our Sicily/Tuscany Wine Dinner!

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