On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced new guidelines regarding mask use while outdoors for both vaccinated and unvaccinated Americans.
According to the CDC, fully vaccinated Americans no longer need to wear masks while outdoors, unless they are in a crowded area. In addition to these new guidelines, unvaccinated Americans can also stop wearing masks outside in certain situations.
The latest CDC guidelines state that those who have been fully vaccinated can now:
- gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart.
- gather indoors with unvaccinated people of any age from one other household (for example, visiting with relatives who all live together) without masks or staying 6 feet apart, unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
- gather or conduct activities outdoors without wearing a mask except in certain crowded settings and venues.
In addition, the CDC added that “If you travel in the United States, you do not need to get tested before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel.”
“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the updated guidance Tuesday in yet another carefully calibrated step on the road back to normal from the coronavirus outbreak that has killed over 570,000 people in U.S.,” reported The Washington Post, adding that “The CDC, which has been cautious in its guidance during the crisis, essentially endorsed what many Americans have already been doing over the past several weeks.”
According to CNN, “If you’re fully vaccinated, the CDC says you can now take your mask off at small outdoor gatherings, or when dining outside with friends from multiple households. The CDC is telling unvaccinated people that they still need to wear a mask at such gatherings.”
According to the latest CDC guidance, people are considered “fully vaccinated” either “2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines,” or “2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.”
Current CDC guidance on masks states that “A mask is NOT a substitute for social distancing. Masks should still be worn in addition to staying at least 6 feet apart, especially when indoors around people who don’t live in your household,” adding that “Masks may not be necessary when you are outside by yourself away from others, or with people who live in your household. However, some areas may have mask mandates while out in public, so please check the rules in your local area (such as in your city, county, or state). Additionally, check whether any federal mask mandates apply to where you will be going.”
Earlier today, CBS News reported that updated guidelines from the federal government would be announced, with Secretary of Health and Human Services, Xavier Becerra, joining to discuss the new guidance.
We're expecting updated guidelines today from the federal government about who should be wearing masks and when.@HHSGov Secretary @XavierBecerra joins us with more on the new guidance. pic.twitter.com/7V1hJ0XJwh
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) April 27, 2021
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