Outdoor dining will re-open tomorrow, Friday, June 12 in Philadelphia.
For restaurants seeking outdoor dining options, applications for licenses will see a 3-day turnaround for approval from the City of Philadelphia.
Those who have existing licenses can operate as soon as June 12, as long as the licenses are up-to-date. Officials also stressed that this is not an opportunity to expand restaurant occupancy.
There is a checklist for restaurants to follow when it comes to keeping themselves and their customers safe.
- Wearing masks
- Distance between customers
- Isolating employees that may have symptoms
- Proper hand-washing and cleaning procedures
- Communication between employees and managers on whether someone is symptomatic or thinks they’ve been exposed to COVID-19
For COVID-19 cases in our area, overall, there have been 156 new cases reported, bringing the total to 24,107. Dr. Thomas Farley says this number is higher than usual because there were more tests received, but a low percentage of the tests were positives. Dr. Farley added that these low numbers of people coming into the hospitals are early warning signs and something “we’re watching closely.”
In Philadelphia, there are currently 322 patients in hospitals and 598 in the region. This number is down by 70% from the peak of cases in April.
A majority of nursing homes also have not seen new cases. Out of the total 1,334 deaths, 738 are from nursing homes. There was one reported death for today’s briefing. Dr. Farley expects to see an increased number of deaths over the next few days, however, with the immense amount of test results coming in.
Although there was concern about protests creating a larger spread of COVID-19, Dr. Farley says that since there were so many protestors wearing masks and attempting to socially distance, there is no evidence of transmission yet.
“Testing sights have never been more available than they are now in Philadelphia,” Dr. Farley said. Testing is still open to those who think they’ve been exposed and are showing symptoms. This includes those who have gone to protests.
When asked if Philadelphia will be ready to transition into green phase next week, Dr. Farley said as-per Governor Tom Wolf’s orders, counties are not able to move to the green phase until at least 2 weeks after entering the yellow phase. He added, “it’s unlikely we will be ready by then.”