CDC: Fully Vaccinated People May Now Gather Without Masks

People line up to check out as they shop a Black Friday sale at a Best Buy store on Thanks
AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released guidelines Monday for fully vaccinated people, allowing indoor gathering without masks.

The CDC’s new guidelines give fully vaccinated people fewer guidelines to follow. The fully vaccinated population is now able to socialize with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or physical distancing and socialize with unvaccinated people from a single household who are low risk for severe coronavirus while indoors without having to wear masks or social distancing. Furthermore, the CDC said if asymptomatic, people will not have to quarantine and test following a known exposure.

In addition, the CDC recommends fully vaccinated people while in public, visiting with multiple households of unvaccinated people, and near anyone in the higher-risk population still follow the previous guidelines:

  • Stay at least 6 feet from people you do not live with.
  • Avoid medium- and large-sized in-person gatherings.
  • Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Follow guidance issued by individual employers.
  • Follow CDC and health department travel requirements and recommendations.

The CDC defined its meaning of a “fully vaccinated person”:

A person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the last required dose of vaccine. Although vaccinations are accelerating, CDC estimates that just 9.2% of the U.S. population has been fully vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine that the FDA has authorized for emergency use.

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky said in a press release, “We know that people want to get vaccinated so they can get back to doing the things they enjoy with the people they love.”

“The benefits of avoiding disruptions such as unnecessary quarantine and social isolation may outweigh the residual risk of becoming ill with COVID-19 or transmitting the virus to others,” the CDC said. “The ability of vaccinated people to gradually resume some aspects of normal life will optimize well-being and may help improve vaccine acceptance.”

Multiple governors have started to end statewide mask mandates and coronavirus restrictions. Last week, Texas became the first to reopen fully. At a press conference, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said, “It is time for Texas to be open 100 percent,” putting an end to statewide mask mandates and reopening businesses.


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