Breaking News
More () »

Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

Shelby County health experts okay phase two of gradual reopening plan, starting now

Starting immediately, close contact businesses such as nail salons can reopen with restrictions, larger groups can gather with social distancing.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Monday, Shelby County took a big step in getting back to normal as health experts agreed to immediately begin phase two of the area’s Back to Business plan.

That means you can again get your nails done or get in a tanning bed, with restrictions, and gather in larger groups with social distancing.

“We will move forward, but we will move forward carefully and responsibly,” Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris said.

After two full weeks of positive signs across different data categories in the COVID-19 containment effort, Monday, Shelby County health experts okayed the immediate start of phase two in the area’s gradual reopening plan.

“We've made significant progress which allowed us to move to phase two today, but we continue to have work ahead of us, particularly focusing on our most vulnerable populations,” Shelby County Health Director Dr. Alisa Haushalter said.

In phase two, nail salons, spas, and tattoo parlors can open with restrictions, gyms and fitness centers can move from 25% to 50% capacity, libraries and attractions can also go to half capacity, and groups of up to 50 people can gather with social distancing.

Among the temporary restrictions for nail salons, spas, and tattoo parlors: workers must have temperature checks and wear face coverings and gloves when providing services.

The close contact businesses must also be stocked with sanitizing supplies and keep a detailed appointment book up to date.

"This is a new way of life and I think we have to be patient with each other as we try to learn new skills around social distancing,” Dr. Haushalter said.

The area’s COVID-19 Joint Task Force said they’ll wait three weeks - Monday June 8th - before deciding whether to move to phase three.

That would allow theaters and auditoriums to open with restrictions and allow groups of more than 50 people with social distancing.

Memphis has moved into Phase 2 of the 'Back-to-Business' plan. We take a look at what we can and can't do. MEMPHIS, Tenn. - On Monday, May 18th, The Shelby County Health Department and the Shelby County Municipal Mayors announced that Phase 2 of their reopening plan is ready to go into effect.

RELATED: President Trump says he's been taking malaria drug in case he gets COVID-19

RELATED: Mid-South coronavirus live updates: WATCH: Shelby County Schools holds briefing on "SCS Re-entry Task Force"

RELATED: Arkansas bars will be able to reopen on May 26, governor says

RELATED: Gov. Bill Lee visits Memphis' COVID-19 alternate care facility as our cameras get first tour inside