All indoor dining will cease in Prince George’s County effective on Wednesday, County Executive Angela Alsobrooks announced at a press conference Thursday.
Retail stores and casinos will operate at 25 percent capacity, and outdoor dining will be open at 50 percent capacity. Curbside service and takeout are encouraged, Alsobrooks said.
The new measure comes as COVID-19 cases rise throughout Maryland and across the country, and as a vaccine could become available this month.
As of Thursday morning, the seven-day positivity rate in Prince George’s County is 10.o1 percent — the highest since June, said county health officer Dr. Ernest Carter. The county recorded more than 2,900 cases last week, which is the highest-ever weekly total since the pandemic began, Carter said.
Carter said a COVID-19 vaccine is expected in Prince George’s County by the end of the year. It’s important to prepare the county for the vaccine, he said, but also to educate county residents on vaccinations. Carter said he will get vaccinated in public, and he is confident it will be effective.
Frontline health care workers, along with nursing home residents and staff, will be first to receive the vaccine, Carter said. The first batch will also be designated for some first responders, essential workers and others in vulnerable populations.
Still, it will be months before the vaccine is available to the general public, he said.
“You’ve got to keep your family healthy in 2021,” Carter concluded.