Michigan issues face mask advisory regardless of vaccinations as COVID-19 surges

With Michigan once again leading the nation in COVID-19 cases per 100,000, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is issuing a face mask advisory for the holiday season, regardless of vaccination status.

VIEW: Where Michigan stands with COVID-19 heading into Thanksgiving

MDHHS announced the advisory Friday morning, just two days after the state was number 1 in the nation in cases per 100,000 with 503.8. According to the advisory, anyone over the age of 2 should wear a face mask while at indoor gatherings, regardless of vaccination status. 

RELATED: FDA approves COVID-19 booster shots for all adults

Additionally, establishments should have a policy to ensure all customers entering or seeking services, including employees, wear a mask.

"The increases in case counts, percent positivity and hospitalizations have us very concerned," said Elizabeth Hertel, MDHHS director. "We are issuing the face mask advisory and are looking to Michiganders to do their part to help protect their friends, their families, and their communities by wearing a mask in indoor settings and getting vaccinated for COVID-19 and flu as soon as possible if they have not already done so."

The CDC also issued recommendations including getting vaccinated, wearing masks, social distancing, and washing hands.

READ NEXT: Fauci worried about uptick in COVID-19 hospitalization among fully vaccinated

Wearing a mask is the most effective mitigation strategy and is recommended for everyone while in public, indoor settings in areas of high transmission. Social distancing is also encouraged, where possible.

"COVID-19 cases are high as we head into the holidays, and we must take every measure we can to keep our families and loved ones safe – which starts with getting vaccinated," said Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, chief medical executive. "Safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines are available to children ages 5 and up, and boosters are available for eligible Michiganders. The holidays can be a time to spread great cheer and we recommend taking measures including wearing a mask indoors to not spread COVID-19 to loved ones."

To maximize protection from COVID-19 for age-eligible children and adults, get vaccinated as soon as you can. To find a vaccine near you, visit VaccineFinder.org.