California is no longer requiring people to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test result to attend large indoor events like concerts and sports games.
While the state has dropped the requirement as of Friday, verification of full vaccination and pre-entry negative test results are still strongly recommended by the state at indoor “mega” events with more than 1,000 attendees.
Masks are also strongly recommended at mega events, but they are not mandated by the state.
Individual venues can, however, keep requiring guests to prove their vaccination status so it’s best to check the event details before heading out without a vaccine card.
Some locations have, however, already announced dropping the requirements.
Ticketed guests won’t have to show proof of vaccination or a negative test result to enter the Crypto.com Arena or the Microsoft Theater, the venues announced Friday.
The state is dropping the vaccine verification requirement as California emerges from an omicron-fueled surge that sent numbers skyrocketing during the winter.
While announcing the change, officials acknowledged that though case rates were declining, large indoor events involve an increased risk of coronavirus transmission.
Los Angeles County, which has been easing COVID-19-related restrictions along with the state in recent weeks, has aligned with the state in lifting the requirements for indoor events.
In the City of L.A., venues hosting large outdoor events were having to check guests’ proof of vaccination or recent negative test results. The City Council voted this week to end that requirement.
Easing the rules on “mega” events comes after California dropped its indoor mask mandate at most places, shifting to strongly recommending face coverings for unvaccinated people in most indoor settings like shops, gyms, bars, movie theaters and schools, but no longer mandating them.
It’s part of the state’s plan to transition to an “endemic” approach to the coronavirus that emphasizes prevention and quick reaction to outbreaks over mandates and closures.
Federal, state and local authorities throughout the nation having been lifting COVID-19-related mandates in recent weeks, even as the country sees increases in BA.2, a highly contagious omicron subvariant.
California officials have stressed the need to react fast if COVID-19 numbers begin to climb again.
“California must be vigilant to maintain situational awareness through surveillance and be ready to pause or reinstate a higher level of protective mitigation recommendations or requirements,” the state’s Department of Public Health wrote in announcing the updated guidance for mega events.