CDC calls for a return to masks for vaccinated Americans in certain places, schools

In changing the recommendations for masking, the CDC cited increasing concern around the fast-spreading delta variant.

7/28/2021 8:21:00 AM

CDC reverses mask guidance and urges vaccinated Americans to wear masks indoors if they are located in areas with high COVID-19 transmission.

In changing the recommendations for masking, the CDC cited increasing concern around the fast-spreading delta variant.

"This new science is worrisome, and unfortunately warrants an update to our recommendation," Walensky said.She said the new data emerged in the last week and showed that vaccinated people who are infected with the delta variant could carry the same viral load as unvaccinated, infected people. As a result, the CDC is asking that even the vaccinated wear masks in public, indoor settings"to help prevent the spread of the delta variants and protect others."

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Walensky emphasized that the vast majority of transmission is still happening among unvaccinated people, and the best way forward is to increase vaccinations everywhere because the vaccines were still considered to be highly effective. The risk of a symptomatic infection is reduced sevenfold for fully vaccinated people, Walensky said, and the risk of hospitalization is reduced twentyfold.

"Getting vaccinated continues to prevent severe illness, hospitalization and death, even with delta. It also helps reduce the spread of the virus in our community. Vaccinated individuals continue to represent a very small amount of transmission occurring around the country," Walensky said.

Jim Lo Scalzo/AP, FILECenter for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky testifies during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington.The public health agency also recommendedschools embrace universal masking

, departing from guidance released earlier this month that suggested vaccinated students and staff were safe to go without a mask."CDC recommends localities encourage universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status," the CDC wrote in a summary of the new guidance."Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with proper prevention strategies are in place."

MORE: CDC director stands firm on mask guidance, calls it 'individual choice' for vaccinated to wear oneThe revised guidance raised questions about the CDC's previous decision to no longer recommend masking, indoors or outdoors, for fully vaccinated people, and whether that was an overly confident move that relied too heavily on an honor system for unvaccinated Americans to continue to follow the rules.

But it also raises questions about how likely it is that fully vaccinated people can transmit the virus when infected, and whether that has changed with the onset of the delta variant -- a question that the CDC is still studying but has said with increasing confidence is much less likely to occur among vaccinated people as opposed to unvaccinated people.

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Emerging science on that question was a key reason the CDC changed the mask guidance two months ago, in May, when it announced that allvaccinated Americans were safe to go without a maskindoors or in a crowd. Its guidance for schools followed that principle.

CDC recommendations noted that individuals and schools could still opt to wear a mask even if fully vaccinated, but said the risk of illness and transmission was low.At the time, Walensky pointed to a"coalescence of more science that has emerged just in the last week" in three areas.

"One is the effectiveness of thevaccinesin general in real world populations. One is the effectiveness against variants, which was just published last week. And then the effectiveness in preventing transmissibility," Walensky said in May.But evolving factors have forced the CDC to take another look; chief among them, the delta variant, and as a close second, some Americans' unwillingness to get vaccinated. And while the CDC didn't predict those barriers, Walensky has consistently reminded Americans that guidance will have to change as the pandemic does.

"This past year has shown us that this virus can be unpredictable. So, if things get worse, there is always a chance we may need to make a change to these recommendations," she said on May 13.On Tuesday, she said she was dismayed to come forward with a new recommendation that certain swaths of the country re-implement mask mandates indoors, but that experts agreed that the new data"required action."

"This weighs heavily on me. I know at 18 months through this pandemic, not only are people tired, they're frustrated," Walensky said."And I know, in the context of all that, it is not a welcomed piece of news that masking is going to be a part of peoples lives who have already been vaccinated."

But she also pointed to low vaccination rates as the reason the delta variant was forcing the change in guidelines in the first place, urging people to step up and get a shot."This moment, and most importantly, the associated illness, suffering and death could have been avoided with higher vaccination coverage in this country," Walensky said. She warned, too, that if vaccinations don't increase, the"big concern" is that the virus will continue to spread, mutate and eventually"could potentially evade our vaccines."

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As of Tuesday, about 69% of adult Americans had at least one shot, while 60% were fully vaccinated. The country missed President Joe Biden's goal to have at least 70% of adults with one shot by July 4. Read more: ABC News »

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Shouldn't have said you can stop wearing masks until the cases per day actually started to go down at a high rate or stopped. Right back to square f'ing 1 dealing with these dumbass anti maskers/vaxxers. The virus has evolved. We must necessarily evolve to beat it. It’s that simple. NewtonCoSchools In order to go to concerts or travel or go out to eat, to the bars proof of being vaccinated needs to be required. We have a lot of dishonest people in the world and on our country alone. This virus is worldwide and we need to buckle down on the rules and regulations.

CDCgov y’all should have never lifted the mask rules in the first place. Y’all want to open everything back up so bad but now we will face harsher consequences. Concerts should have never been back open. Also, it needs to be required to show proof of being vaccinated. Imagine that Science 101. Viruses mutate and our response to them has to evolve as they do. That being said, Dr. Walensky should never have altered the masking guidelines as early as she and her team did weeks ago.

If the CDC was serious about Covid they would recommend the southern border shut down to illegal aliens!! Because it isn't 'science' if it doesn't reach the opposite conclusion every other week... We never stopped. We have kids under 12. The masks should have never been removed. The CDC screwed up. The honor system was BS. They should have never stopped mask mandates 😡😡😡😡

CDC Live Updates: CDC to issue new guidelines on masks for COVID vaccinated, students in schoolsAn earlier guidance issued in May by the CDC said that fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks when indoors.

Not a reversal; an updated guidance based on new evidence No one asked F this political body. Why doesn’t the CDC recommend closing the border? There’s plenty of covid positive illegal aliens entering. US used a year to debate on wearing a simple mask... It’s almost like I said this was a bad idea when they lifted the mandate.

Many of the unvaccinated people are MAGA people. It's the right call, but probably too late. CDCDirector lost all credibility when she pushed schools to open last year w/o teacher vaccinations. She played politics then with the 'open schools now' crowd and played politics by lifting the mask guidance too soon. CDCgov

“But wearing masks is so inconvenient!” So is a stay in ICU…or a funeral. Grow the fuck up, quit thinking only about yourself and wear a damn mask. The life you save might just be YOURS. This is dumb. The vaccine has been out for months. Those who will comply with the mask order have likely already been vaccinated and those who won’t likely haven’t been. It won’t be anywhere near as effective as it was pre-vaccine.

Symptomatic breakthrough COVID-19 infections rare, CDC data estimatesNationwide, approximately 153,000 symptomatic breakthrough cases are estimated to have occurred as of last week, representing approximately 0.098% of those fully vaccinated, according to unpublished internal CDC document obtained by ABC News. This is just awful and irresponsible. We have no idea how many vaccinated cases have occurred. The CDC is not having us report them. Notice please, they say “estimated” but give no methodology for their estimation. This is just not true. That’s 0.098% is an amazingly low percentage. Not even Point 1 %!

Covid-19: CDC brings back indoor mask guidance for virus hot spotsIn states seeing surges, US health officials again recommend masking for all - including at schools.

New evidence shows Trump appointees' political interference with CDC weekly Covid data reports, House subcommittee saysA Democratic-led House select committee says it has uncovered evidence of political interference by the Trump administration into the federal government's coronavirus response last year, including attempts to alter or block data reports from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention detailing the dire effects of the virus. Most of that knew that already. If this committee is only just now catching up to shit everybody knew ten months ago, this is gonna take forever DID THEY LEAD A SELECT COMMITTIEE ABOUT THE BLM AND ANTIFA RIOTS OVER THE SUMMER ? IF NOT--SHUT UP ABOUT TRUMP BECAUSE ITS ALL A BUNCH OF MALARKY !! IN SIMPLE TERMS BS !

CDC set to recommend vaccinated Americans wear masks indoors againThe announcement, which applies to vaccinated as well as unvaccinated people, will mark a sharp change in policy for the nation’s leading health agency. And the 'I just want it to end crowd' will fall in line like sheep So in other words now science is saying the vaccines DONT work and the government continues to show how much of a bunch of frauds they are. Nice this will definitely get people to get the vaccine now 😬😂 No

CDC: Vaccinated Americans should start wearing masks again indoors in areas with high COVID-19 transmission ratesThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday afternoon that it is now recommending that all students in K-12 schools wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status. nice Lockdowns coming soon