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Masks requirement at SDUSD, other districts starts Monday

"This new variant, BA 5, is tricky. It invades your immune system effectively," said San Diego Cardiac Center's Dr. Arvin Narula.

SAN DIEGO — They're back. Masks are required at San Diego Unified School District schools and offices beginning on Monday.

Return to masks, "High" COVID-19 levels

"This new variant, BA 5, is tricky. It invades your immune system effectively. This new variant evades the system even if you had a new vaccination. It is tricky to get under control and that's why I think more cases are on the rise," said San Diego Cardiac Center's Dr. Arvin Narula. 

San Diego County entered the "High" COVID-19 Community Level Thursday. This means masks are returning to some indoor settings.

"It looks like more COVID cases are on the rise and more hospitalizations," said Dr. Narula.

San Diego Unified School District

Starting Monday, indoor masking will be required at all San Diego Unified School districts and offices. 

This applies to students and staff in summer school programs and is set to last for at least two weeks.

"The masks, from what we know from the data, are effective. We know they are effective. Problem is there is a burnout. Masks are effective. They work, but it's hard for people to be compliant. If you had a family member in the operating room, would you want surgeon wearing a mask or not?" said Dr. Narula.

Sweetwater Union High School District

According to the Sweetwater Union High School District's website, vaccinated staff and students are strongly recommended to wear a face mask. Unvaccinated staff must wear a mask when in the presence of others.

Joann Fields, San Diego AAPI advocate, said they are collaborating with the Sweetwater district to encourage wearing masks and weekly COVID testing to prevent the closing of school campuses.

“We do not want campuses to close down. We know it becomes a hardship for working parents and working families. Students want to interact in person. We want to have preventative measures so campuses stay open. That is what we are advocating for," said Fields. 

San Diego Naval Bases

Masks will also be required at military installations in the San Diego region. Naval Base Coronado and Naval Base San Diego posted notices on their Facebook pages stating mask mandates will take effect on Monday.

The county does not currently have a mask requirement in place, however it strongly recommends mask use following the California Department of Health Guidance.

Dr. Narula says they are working on a vaccine for the newer subvariants. It still has to be FDA approved.

WATCH RELATED: San Diego County ascends to 'High' COVID-19 activity level, no mask mandate pending (July 2022).

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