According to the leading U.S. public health agency, Americans vaccinated against Covid-19 no longer need to wear masks when outdoors, except in crowds. However, the rules have yet to change at the state level, with some states imposing very strict rules on mask use.
Americans vaccinated against Covid-19 no longer need to wear masks when outdoors, except when in crowds, health officials announced Tuesday. “If you are fully vaccinated and want to participate in a small gathering with people who are vaccinated and unvaccinated … the science shows … that you can do so safely, without a mask,” said Rochelle Walensky the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the main federal public health agency.
“Taking a step back to the normal state of affairs”
“On the other hand, we continue to recommend wearing masks in crowded outdoor places, such as full stadiums or concerts,” she added at a press briefing. She justified this by the fact that in these situations, many unvaccinated people, and potentially at risk of developing a severe form of Covid-19, may be present. “Today is another day we can take a step back to the normal state of affairs” before coronavirus, she welcomed.
In addition, the CDC now believes that unvaccinated people can also walk, run or bike with household members, or participate in “small gatherings” outdoors with vaccinated people, without wearing masks. However, they should always cover their face if unvaccinated people are present. A person is considered vaccinated two weeks after the injection of the vaccine (of the second dose for those administered in two injections), recalled Rochelle Walensky.
Health authorities have updated their recommendations based on these announcements. In the United States, rules vary from state to state, and some states had strict rules requiring people to wear masks anywhere outside their homes, even without anyone around. These states should now evolve these requirements, although they are not absolutely required to do so. According to CDC data, 42.5% of the U.S. population, or more than 140 million people, have received at least one dose of one of the three vaccines authorized in the country (Pfizer/BioNtech, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson).