Many people who have been fully vaccinated are now breathing a sigh of relief. Thursday, May 13th, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced new guidance for fully vaccinated Americans.
Fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a face mask or stay 6 feet away from others in most settings, whether outdoors or indoors, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in updated public health guidance released Thursday.
The newly updated guidelines state that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
Additionally, fully vaccinated people can refrain from testing following a known exposure unless they are residents or employees of a correctional or detention facility or a homeless shelter.
“Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities, large or small, without wearing a mask or physical distancing,” 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 updated guidance does not apply to health care settings, which have their own separate guidance. Additionally, public transportation and travel will still require masks and guidance will be updated as science emerges, said Walensky.
The CDC made this decision based on new studies from Israel and the United States that prove the vaccines work.
However, unvaccinated people “remain at risk” of illness and death and should remain masked and observe physical distancing, said Walensky.
“This is an exciting and powerful moment, it could only happen because of the work of so many who made sure we have the rapid administration of three safe and effective vaccines,” Walensky stated.
“Today is a great day for America, and our long battle with coronavirus,” said President Biden Thursday afternoon. “I think it’s a great milestone … It’s been made possible by the extraordinary success we’ve had in vaccinating so many Americans so quickly.”
This news comes just ahead of the Memorial Day and Fourth of July parade season. President Joe Biden has said he hopes to see enough Americans vaccinated by Independence Day to safely hold outdoor gatherings.