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Los Angeles to require COVID-19 vaccinations at bars and nightclubs; new restrictions for pro-sports fans

ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Public health officials will require COVID-19 vaccinations at bars and nightclubs in Los Angeles County. The new health orders announced on Wednesday will also implement new restrictions for fans attending professional sports events and other large gatherings.

Starting Oct. 7, patrons and employees of indoor bars, wineries, breweries, nightclubs, and lounges must have at least one coronavirus vaccine dose. By Nov. 4, proof of full vaccination will be mandatory. The order does not apply to restaurants, but COVID-19 vaccinations are recommended.

"This modified health officer order aligns with the continued need to reduce risk of transmission and increase vaccination coverage," Los Angeles County Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer told the Board of Supervisors on Wednesday. "This is a reasonable path forward that will position us to be better able to break the cycle of surges."

New York City rolled out its vaccine passport order in August, which requires people to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination in order to enter indoor restaurants, bars, movie theaters, gyms, arenas, and more.

Los Angeles County's Department of Public Health also implemented new restrictions on large outside gatherings. The new order requires attendees of outdoor events of more than 10,000 people to verify vaccination status or have a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of the event. The order will include L.A. pro sports teams, including home games for the Dodgers, Rams, and Chargers.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said he supports the L.A. County health order, but does not plan on instituting the rule for the entire state.

"We're satisfied with where the state is today," Newsom said on Wednesday.

Back in April, the county issued a mask mandate for events with more than 10,000 people in attendance.

Beginning on Sept. 20, California will require proof of vaccination or a negative coronavirus test to attend indoor gatherings of 1,000 or more people, which the state boasts as the first of its kind in the nation, according to KTLA.

In August, the city of Los Angeles approved an ordinance requiring city employees to be fully vaccinated or face weekly testing. Thousands of Los Angeles Police Department employees have already filed for a vaccination exemption. Six LAPD workers have filed a lawsuit against the vaccine mandate in federal court.

Los Angeles County reported 1,930 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, bringing the total number of cases to 1,437,073. There are currently 1,214 COVID-related hospitalizations, and there have been a total of 25,748 COVID-19 deaths in the county, which is the most populated in the United States with over 10 million residents.

Of L.A. County residents over the age of 12, there have been 6,679,518 who received one coronavirus vaccine dose (75.7%), and there are 5,899,901 who are fully vaccinated (67%), according to the County of Los Angeles Public Health Department.

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