WASHINGTON (AP) — In a move to send the country back toward pre-pandemic life, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday eased indoor mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people, allowing them to safely stop wearing masks inside in most places.
“Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities large or small without wearing a mask or physical distancing,” Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the CDC and Prevention said Thursday. “You can start doing the things you stopped doing because of the pandemic.”The latest coronavirus headlines from NewsNation
Walensky says if individuals are immune-compromised they must consult with their physician before removing masks in public places.
The CDC will also no longer recommend that fully vaccinated people wear masks outdoors in crowds. The announcement comes as the CDC and the Biden administration have faced pressure to ease restrictions on fully vaccinated people, people who are two weeks past their last required COVID-19 vaccine dose, in part to highlight the benefits of getting the shots.
The new guidance still calls for wearing masks in crowded indoor settings like buses, planes, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters, but will help clear the way for reopening workplaces, schools, and other venues – even removing the need for masks or social distancing for those who are fully vaccinated.Biden tells Americans not to panic as Colonial Pipeline reaches full capacity, fuel prices remain high
The eased guidance comes two weeks after the CDC recommended that fully vaccinated people continue to wear masks indoors in all settings and outdoors in large crowds.
The person spoke on the condition of anonymity to preview the announcement ahead of the official release. The White House did not comment on the matter.
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