Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine announced that the temporary suspension will go into effect on 5 p.m. Wednesday and remain in place until 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.
“It turns out that the biggest say for drinking is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving,” Wolf said. “When people get together in that situation, it leads to an increase in the exchange of fluids, that leads to an increase in infection.”
On Saturday alone, there were more than 7,000 new cases of Covid-19, according to data from the state, and more than 4,000 additional new cases on Sunday.
“Transmission of Covid-19 is reaching new heights that we have not yet encountered,” Levine said.
Levine and Wolf also announced a new stay-at-home advisory for residents starting Monday, though they clarified that it was not a shutdown order.
Indoor dining remains at 25 to 50% capacity, while retail can continue at 75% capacity, Levine said. Gyms, salons and other personal care businesses can continue to operate at 50% capacity.
Beginning November 27, businesses must allow employees to work from home. Large gatherings are reduced, with prohibitions against events with more than 500 people indoors or 2,500 outdoors, according to Levine.
At the same time, Covid-19 hospitalizations are soaring at unprecedented rates nationwide — threatening reduced care for even those who don’t have coronavirus.