The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that fully vaccinated people begin once again wearing masks indoors in places with high Covid-19 transmission rates. The agency is also recommending kids wear masks in schools this fall – a highly controversial subject throughout the nation, and one that is likely to be discussed again in Florida as we near the start of the 2021-2022 school year.
Federal health officials still believe fully vaccinated individuals represent a very small amount of transmission. Still, some vaccinated people could be carrying higher levels of the virus than previously understood and potentially transmit it to others.
The guidance for unvaccinated people remains the same: continue masking until they are fully vaccinated.
Nearly half — 46% — of U.S. counties currently have high transmission and 17% have “substantial” transmission, according to data from the CDC, as of Tuesday morning.
“This pandemic continues to pose a serious threat to the health of all Americans,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky told reporters on a call. “Today, we have new science related to the delta variant that requires us to update the guidance regarding what you can do when you are fully vaccinated.”
Osceola County has reinstated its indoors mask-wearing policy for all county employees.
The CDC’s new guidance comes ahead of the fall season when the delta variant is expected to cause a potential surge in new coronavirus cases.
“In areas with substantial and high transmission, CDC recommends fully vaccinated people wear masks in public, indoor settings to help prevent the spread of the delta variant, and protect others. This includes schools,” Walensky said. The CDC recommends that everyone in grade schools wear masks indoors, “including teachers, staff, students and visitors, regardless of vaccination status.”