Mask Guidance

The Oregon Health Authority made this decision because Oregon has reached a record-high number of COVID-19 cases. Hospitalizations are also at a record high. Without interventions, COVID-19 hospitalizations will overwhelm our medical staff and prevent people from accessing treatment for other illnesses. 

Masks will keep the highly contagious Delta variant from spreading further. They are also the best tool for keeping schools and businesses open.

The best way to prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. Even though a small percentage of people who get vaccinated can experience breakthrough infections, the risk of extreme illness or death is extremely low.

Viruses constantly change to adapt and survive, and variants emerge when a strain has one or more mutations that differ from others. With the Delta variant, masking is more urgent than ever. 

Mask Dos and Don'ts

Be sure to wear a mask with at least two layers of solid fabric that covers your mouth and nose completely. 

Do not wear a mask made out of a mesh or lace material.

Coronavirus symptoms

Image courtesy of the Center of Disease Control (CDC).

If you wish to report a violation of the state masking mandate, you can report it to the state's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). 

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Clackamas County is an area of substantial COVID-19 transmission. It can be tiring to continue wearing a mask, but masks can help keep us from spreading and catching COVID-19. Masking is an effective way to protect against serious disease, and is one way that we can protect our communities, families, and ourselves.

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The CDC recommends masks with two or more layers of washable, breathable fabric and an adjustable nose wire to help with fit.  Masks should fit snugly above the nose, below the mouth, and on the sides of the face. Masks with exhalation vents and face shields are not recommended.

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If you have a viral infection, wearing a mask will reduce the chance of you spreading it to others. It will not make you more sick or make your virus last longer. Remember to wash cloth masks regularly, and only wear them once they are completely dry.

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Wearing a mask does not put you at risk of inhaling too much carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide does not build up in cloth or surgical masks. 

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The governor removed all COVID-19 restrictions when our cases were going down and our hospital capacity looked good. The highly contagious Delta variant has changed all that. The best thing you can do to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. The second-best prevention method is to wear a mask. It protects you as well as the people around you.

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Office Hours:

Clackamas County Call Center
503-655-8224
Monday to Friday
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Vaccine questions?
COVIDVaccine@clackamas.us

Regional Information
2-1-1

Clackamas County Crisis and Support Line
503-655-8585

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-TALK