Individuals that are fully vaccinated now do not need to wear a mask or social distance in almost all social settings, both indoors and outdoors, according to new CDC guidance. The new CDC guidance includes information on when and where masks are still needed, and how certain businesses should continue their current mandates.
“even if they’ve had their final vaccine dose two or more weeks ago,”
There are a handful of instances where experts from the CDC say masks should still be worn, even if an individual is fully vaccinated. Those instances include health-care settings and businesses that still choose to enforce social distancing and mask-wearing, “even if they’ve had their final vaccine dose two or more weeks ago,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told reporters at a press briefing earlier today.
“Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities, large or small, without wearing a mask or physically distancing themselves,” Walensky said. “If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic. We have all longed for this moment when we can get back to some sense of normalcy.”
The CDC still recommends that unvaccinated people continue to wear masks and socially distance themselves from others. Experts also added that unvaccinated individuals should understand that they are still at risk of mild or severe illness, death, and risk of transmitting COVID-19 to others.
The announcement came earlier today just ahead of Memorial Day and Fourth of July festivities, a date that President Biden and his administration used previously as a marker for when vaccinated Americans should be able to have outdoor gatherings.
The CDC reported on Wednesday that more than 151 million Americans aged 18 and older, or about 60% of all adults, have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. This milestone is about 10% less than the 70% of vaccinated adults the Biden administration promised by July 4.
To reach this goal, the Biden administration plans to make vaccines more easily accessible to every American. These include the conversion of thousands of pharmacies across the country to walk-in clinics, as well as a newly announced partnership with Uber and Lyft that will offer free rides to vaccination sites until July 4, to name a few.