Changes made to Sedgwick County’s latest health order

Sedgwick County’s Local Health Officer has signed a new health order with some changes from the one that went into effect on November 11th.

The new order from Dr. Garold Minns will allow restaurants to open for in-person dining from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.  Bars and nightclubs can also be open during those hours unless state or local law requires a later opening time.  Restaurants may continue to offer carryout, delivery and curbside services past 11 p.m.

The order allows fitness and health centers to keep locker rooms open and there must be frequent cleaning of common touch points, such as benches, seating and lockers.

Mass gatherings are limited to 100 people or 50 percent of the fire code capacity, whichever is less, but people must be able to maintain the six-foot social distance requirement.  Mass gatherings will apply to restaurants, bars and nightclubs and fitness centers.   Restaurants may seat parties of no more than eight people.

Retail stores are not considered mass gatherings, but they are limited to 50 percent of fire code capacity with concerns about social distancing and holiday shopping.

Religious institutions, election polling places, licensed child care facilities, schools and their activities, and courts are exempt from the mass gathering restrictions.

County health officials continue to urge people to wear masks and follow social distancing, as well as frequent hand washing, as the best steps to limit the spread of COVID-19.