Yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) clarified when fully vaccinated folks for COVID-19 can ditch their facemask. But it also included a few instances when unvaccinated folks can safely skip a face mask too.
As a reminder, the CDC considers people “fully vaccinated” for COVID-19 ≥2 weeks after they have received the second dose in a 2-dose series (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) or ≥2 weeks after they have received a single-dose vaccine (Johnson and Johnson (J&J)/Janssen).
In its updated guidance, the CDC confirmed that fully vaccinated people can:
- Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
- Visit with unvaccinated people (including children) from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
- Resume domestic travel and refrain from testing before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel
- Refrain from testing before leaving the United States for international travel (unless required by the destination) and refrain from self-quarantine after arriving back in the United States
- Refrain from testing following a known exposure, if asymptomatic, with some exceptions for specific settings
- Refrain from quarantine following a known exposure if asymptomatic
- Refrain from routine screening testing if asymptomatic and feasible
Also, fully vaccinated people can participate in outdoor activities and recreation without a mask, except in certain crowded settings and venues. The CDC does not define “crowded settings and venues.” My best guess is Tuesdays for Frozen Marg night at the Bloggerdome deck would be considered crowded. (Wednesdays for the Foo Fighters and $2 PB&J shots, fuhgeddaboudit!). Conversely, any day that ends in a “y” at Yankee Stadium watching the putrid Pinstripes play what few might consider “baseball” would not.
Additionally, this graphic suggests that unvaccinated people can safely walk, run, or bike with their family members outside without a mask. They can also go maskless to a small, outdoor gathering with fully vaccinated family and friends.
Real talk: many folks that are voluntarily unvaccinated probably don’t care about masks and won’t adhere to this guidance anyway.
This latest guidance does not specifically address how businesses should adapt. So, companies should continue to follow state and local guidance.