Americans fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can gather without masks, CDC says

Fully-vaccinated Americans can gather with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing, new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed on Monday. 

The long-awaited guidelines gives the U.S. a sneak-peek of what the new normal will look like in the next few months. 

The recommendations also say that vaccinated people can come together in the same way with people considered at low-risk for severe disease, such as in the case of vaccinated grandparents visiting healthy children and grandchildren.

The guidance is designed to address a growing demand, as more adults have been getting vaccinated and wondering if it gives them greater freedom to visit family members, travel, or do other things like they did before the COVID-19 pandemic swept the world last year.

About 30.7 million Americans – or only about 9.2 percent of the U.S. population – have been fully vaccinated with a federally authorized COVID-19 vaccine so far, according to the CDC. 

Fully-vaccinated Americans can gather with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing, according to new CDC guidelines released on Monday. Pictured: Granby kindergarten school teacher Christina Kibby receives the J&J COVID-19 vaccine, at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, March 3

Fully-vaccinated Americans can gather with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing, according to new CDC guidelines released on Monday. Pictured: Granby kindergarten school teacher Christina Kibby receives the J&J COVID-19 vaccine, at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, March 3

Fully-vaccinated Americans can gather with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing, according to new CDC guidelines released on Monday. Pictured: Granby kindergarten school teacher Christina Kibby receives the J&J COVID-19 vaccine, at Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, March 3

About 30.7 million Americans - or about 9.2% of the U.S. population - have been fully vaccinated

About 30.7 million Americans - or about 9.2% of the U.S. population - have been fully vaccinated

About 30.7 million Americans – or about 9.2% of the U.S. population – have been fully vaccinated

It comes as the national roll out picks up speed with about two million Americans being vaccinated every day

It comes as the national roll out picks up speed with about two million Americans being vaccinated every day

It comes as the national roll out picks up speed with about two million Americans being vaccinated every day 

‘We know that people want to get vaccinated so they can get back to doing the things they enjoy with the people they love,’ said CDC Director Dr Rochelle Walensky, in a statement.

‘There are some activities that fully vaccinated people can begin to resume now in their own homes. Everyone – even those who are vaccinated – should continue with all mitigation strategies when in public settings.   

‘As the science evolves and more people get vaccinated, we will continue to provide more guidance to help fully vaccinated people safely resume more activities.’ 

The CDC is continuing to recommend that fully vaccinated people continue to wear well-fitted masks, avoid large gatherings, and physically distance themselves from others when out in public. 

The CDC also advised vaccinated people to get tested if they develop symptoms that could be related to COVID-19.

Officials say a person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the last required dose of vaccine.  

Authorized vaccine doses first became available in December, and they were products that required two doses spaced weeks apart.

But since January, a small but growing number of Americans have been fully vaccinated, and have been asking questions like: Do I still have to wear a mask? Can I go to a bar now? Can I finally see my grandchildren?

Health officials initially expected the guidelines to be released last week.

However, on Friday, Walensky said she and other CDC administrators were still in the process of reviewing the recommendations to make sure they were clear.

‘I’m disappointed this was not done sooner,’ Dr Monica Gandhi, an infectious-disease expert at the University of California at San Francisco told the Washington Post. 

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