The CDC Says to "Avoid" Going Here, Even If You're Vaccinated
The agency is reminding people to avoid one particular setting at the moment.
This time last year, the U.S. was in a very different place with COVID. Most states were in shut down, new cases were soaring, and it seemed like years before there would be a vaccine to protect us against the virus. Luckily, things have changed drastically. Not only do we have three safe and effective vaccines, but, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 101.4 million people in the U.S. are fully vaccinated as of Apr. 30. But, as experts have warned, new COVID cases are still popping up across the nation, which is something to keep in mind as we start to move toward some semblance of life as we knew it. In particular, the CDC says there's one place you should steer clear of—regardless of whether you're vaccinated or not. Keep reading to learn where they say to avoid going, and for more guidance during the pandemic, The CDC Says People Who Get COVID After Vaccination Have This in Common.
The CDC recommends avoiding large indoor gatherings, whether you're vaccinated or not.
While many people have started eating indoors at restaurants and going into the office for work, the CDC is still urging everyone to keep away from large gatherings indoors. Updated guidance from the CDC as of Apr. 27 says everyone—including fully vaccinated people—"should avoid indoor large-sized in-person gatherings and follow any applicable local guidance restricting the size of gatherings."
The agency explains that large indoor gatherings, whether sporting events, festivals, concerts, weddings, parties, conferences, or trade shows, pose a risk because they "bring together many people from multiple households."
And for more on places you may want to avoid, check out The 2 Places Dr. Fauci Still Won't Go After Vaccination.
There are several factors that could make the risk of COVID transmission higher indoors, the CDC warns.
If you've decided that attending an indoor event is something you must do, the CDC says it's important to know the number of COVID cases in your community or the area where most attendees are coming from. If it's somewhere where the virus is spreading at a higher rate, that could mean there's a higher chance the guests have been exposed to COVID.
The space's ventilation, the length of the gathering, the ability to physically distance, mask wearing practices, the number of unvaccinated people (including children), and "behaviors such as singing, shouting, physical exertion, or heavy breathing" could all increase the risk of COVID transmission, the CDC warns. And for more guidance to follow, The CDC Says Don't Do This Until 4 Weeks After Getting Vaccinated.
Unvaccinated people are the ones most in harm's way at these gatherings, the CDC explains.
The CDC explains that, if you're vaccinated, the risk of getting COVID yourself or transmitting the virus to others "may be very low." But, the agency adds, "large-sized indoor gatherings and those including unvaccinated people from multiple households increase the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission."
It's particularly important that fully vaccinated people "take precautions when visiting with unvaccinated people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 or visiting with unvaccinated people who have people at increased risk for severe disease in their own households," the CDC explains.
Regardless of your vaccination status or that of those around you, if you've tested positive for COVID or have symptoms of the virus, the CDC says you need to wait 10 days before you visit or attend a gathering of any size.
And for more vaccine guidance, Don't Drink More Than This After Your Vaccine, Experts Warn.
The CDC says that everyone should still wear a mask should they choose to go to a crowded indoor event.
If you don't heed the CDC's warning, the agency says that again, even if you're fully vaccinated, you should wear a well-fitted mask at a crowded in-person gathering.
The CDC also urges vaccinated people to wear masks when visiting unvaccinated people, who may be more of risk of getting COVID.
"Although these vaccines are extremely effective, we know that the virus spreads very well indoors," CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, said during a White House briefing on Apr. 28. "Until more people are vaccinated and while we still have more than 50,000 cases a day, mask use indoors will provide extra protection."
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But fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear masks at small outdoor events.
The CDC now says fully vaccinated people can take part in outdoor activities and recreation without a mask, as well as visit other vaccinated people without a mask, and visit "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."
"If you are fully vaccinated and want to attend a small outdoor gathering with people who are vaccinated and unvaccinated, or dine at an outdoor restaurant with friends from multiple households, the science shows if you are vaccinated, you can do so safely unmasked," Walensky said on Apr. 28.
White House chief COVID adviser Anthony Fauci, MD, spoke with Today on Apr. 28 about the CDC's new outdoor mask guidelines, and said the new rules are proof that "we're going in the right direction." "The risk of getting infected if you are vaccinated and outdoors is extremely low," he said.
And for more risks to avoid, check out The CDC Says These Are the "Least Safe" Places You're Going Right Now.