Even as COVID cases rise, mask mandates stay shelved

FILE -City residents wait in a line extending around the block to receive free at-home rapid COVID-19 test kits in Philadelphia, Monday, Dec. 20, 2021. Philadelphia is ending its indoor mask mandate, city health officials said Thursday night, April 21, 2022, abruptly reversing course just days after city residents had to start wearing masks again amid a sharp increase in infections. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

NEW YORK — An increase in COVID-19 infections around the U.S. has sent more cities into new high-risk categories that are supposed to trigger indoor mask wearing, but much of the country is stopping short of bringing back restrictions amid deep pandemic fatigue.