Panhandle Health District Board to evaluate status of Kootenai County’s mask mandate Thursday

COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho — The Panhandle Health District Board will evaluate the status of Kootenai County’s mask mandate at its Thursday afternoon meeting.

This comes as the PHD moved Kootenai and Boundary Counties into the “substantial risk” or “red” category. The decision was made due to rising positivity rates, hospitalizations and seven-day rolling averages. Kootenai Health has also reported that it is at 99 percent capacity and could have to transfer patients out of state as a result of rising cases.

RELATED: Kootenai Health at 99 percent capacity, may have to transfer patients to hospitals in Seattle and Portland

The mask mandate has been in effect in Kootenai County since July, though it has largely not been enforced. However, those in violation are subject to a misdemeanor charge and could face fines or possible jail time.

The board is set to convene at 12:30 p.m.

RELATED: Panhandle Health District board approves mask mandate in Kootenai County

READ: Coeur d’Alene students return to hybrid learning amid COVID-19 spike