December 11, 2020

New Mitigation Efforts To Take Effect 12/12

On December 10, Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine introduced temporary protective mitigation measures that will take effect in Pennsylvania on December 12 at 12:01 a.m.


Temporary mitigation measures will take effect on December 12, 2020, at 12:01 a.m., and remain in effect until 8 a.m. on January 4, 2021. These mitigation efforts were put into place to:

    • stop the devastating spread of COVID-19 in the Commonwealth,
    • keep Pennsylvania hospitals and health care workers from being overwhelmed, and
    • help Pennsylvanians get through the holiday season – and closer to a widely available vaccine – as safely as possible.

These efforts do not apply to educational instruction but do apply to school activities within and outside of the classroom that are not related to educational instruction, including, but not limited to, assemblies, school board meetings, staff meetings, and extracurricular activities. View the Frequently Asked Questions page for more information on school operations.

Limited-Time Mitigation Measures

Capacity Limits for Businesses
    • All in-person businesses serving the public may only operate at up to 50 percent of the maximum capacity stated on the applicable certificate of occupancy, except as limited by existing orders to a smaller capacity limit.
Indoor Gatherings and Events
    • Indoor gatherings and events of more than 10 persons are prohibited.
    • Groups of people who share space within a building in the ordinary course of operations, such as in an office building, classroom, licensed child care, and non-licensed school-age programs, production floor, or similar regularly occurring operation of a business or organization, are NOT classified as events or gatherings.
    • Churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, and other places of congregate worship are specifically excluded from the limitations set forth on indoor gatherings during religious services. However, these institutions are strongly encouraged to find alternative methods for worship, as in-person gatherings pose a significant risk to participants at this time.
Outdoor Gatherings and Events
    • Outdoor gatherings and events of more than 50 persons are prohibited.
In-Person Extracurricular School Activities
    • Voluntary activities sponsored or approved by a school entity’s governing body or administration are suspended, but these extracurricular activities may be held virtually. This includes, but is not limited to, attendance at or participation in activities such as musical ensembles, school plays, student council, clubs, and school dances.
K-12 School Sports and Youth Sports
    • All sports at K-12 public schools, nonpublic schools, private schools and clubs, travel, recreational, intermural, and intramural sports are paused.
In-Person Dining and Alcohol Sales
    • All in-person indoor dining at businesses in the retail food services industry, including, but not limited to, bars, restaurants, breweries, wineries, distilleries, social clubs, and private catered events are prohibited.
    • Outdoor dining, take-out food service, and take-out alcohol sales are permitted and may continue, subject to any limitations or restrictions imposed by Pennsylvania law, or this or any other Order issued by the Secretary of Health or by the Governor.

More Information

To view the full list of mitigation efforts, read the full press release. Answers to frequently asked questions are also available.


November 20, 2020

Stay-At-Home Advisory in Allegheny County

On November 18, the Allegheny County Health Department issued a stay-at-home and stop social gatherings advisory to slow the rapid spread of COVID-19. If left unchecked, the spread of COVID-19 poses a risk to communities and healthcare systems in Allegheny County.


Beginning immediately, Allegheny County residents are asked to stay at home and stop social gatherings to stem the rapid rise of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the county. Residents are advised to only leave home to go to work or school, for essential needs such as seeking medical care, going to the grocery store or pharmacy, getting food, or the like.

Residents must always wear a face mask and practice physical distancing by staying at least six feet away from others in accordance with the November 17 state masking order. Additionally, residents are strongly encouraged to:

    • not have guests in their homes unless they are essential workers (e.g., home healthcare providers, child care workers, or educators),
    • cancel traditional Thanksgiving celebrations and celebrate virtually with non-household members,
    • avoid unnecessary travel, and
    • limit social event gatherings.

This advisory will remain in place for 30 days or until such time as the Health Director determines a change to the guidance is appropriate. All restrictions put in place by the Commonwealth and the Pennsylvania Department of Health remain in effect.

More Information

To view the full list of recommendations, please read the full advisory.