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Interior Health easing restrictions, but mask mandate remains in place

The COVID-19 restrictions that were put in place for Interior Health on Aug. 20 are now being eased, as cases begin to see a decline and the BC Vaccine Card is brought into place.

With the introduction of the Vaccine Card it will allow for the following restrictions in the Interior to be eased:

  • For smaller organized events, participants will be required to show proof of vaccination (minimum one dose) until Oct. 24, 2021. By Oct. 24, full vaccination (two doses) will be required. Indoor events may be held with up to 50 people, and outdoor events may be up to 100 people.

  • Proof of full vaccination will be required for participants at all large events, consistent with Step 3 of BC’s Restart Plan. This means indoor events may be held that include 50 people or 50% of a venue’s capacity (whichever is greater); outdoor events may include 5,000 people or 50% of a venue’s capacity (whichever is greater).

  • High-intensity group exercise classes in the Interior are now permitted, provided all participants and instructors are fully vaccinated with two doses.

  • All other fitness and exercise classes require proof of a minimum of one dose of the vaccine until Oct. 24, after which time two doses will be required.

In addition, the Central Okanagan food and liquor servicing order has been lifted, and alcohol service may resume after 10 pm starting today.

</who>Photo credit: 123rf | Stock Photo

The following regional health orders will remain in place across the Interior:

  • Gatherings in vacation rentals are limited to five guests or one other household

  • Outdoor personal gatherings (e.g, birthday parties, backyard BBQs, block parties) are limited to no more than 50 people.

  • Indoor personal gatherings are limited to five guests or one other household.

These measures will remain in place until Interior Health experiences lower cases and higher vaccination rates.

“Thank you to everyone across the Interior who continues to help slow the spread of COVID-19,” said Interior Health president and CEO, Susan Brown. “However, we can’t let our guard down now. Getting vaccinated and being able to show proof of vaccination is how we can now resume some events and activities safely and with more people.”

Non-essential travel to or from the Interior remains discouraged unless people have received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine.

The provincial health order for the mask mandate remains in place in all public indoor settings across British Columbia.

Eligible people looking to get their first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine can find a list of drop in clinics in the Interior here, or book an appointment online here.

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