As more and more people are getting the COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC says that it is safe for fully vaccinated individuals to meet with other vaccinated people without the need for as many restrictions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention made the announcement on Monday, with CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky saying, "Science and the protection of the public health must guide us as we begin to resume these activities." She added, "Today’s action represents an on the first step. It is not our final destination."
As an example, Walensky explained that this new guidance means that any grandparent who has been vaccinated can feel safe if they want to be around their grandchildren who are also vaccinated. She also implied that as more people get vaccinated fewer restrictions will be necessary to keep the public safe. However, she also clarified that not enough people are vaccinated yet — only around 10 percent of the population — for it to be safe to fully let our guards down. "We still need to do our best to protect those who remain unvaccinated and remain vulnerable," Walensky stated. "So we’re doing our best to do that."
#COVID19 vaccines are effective at protecting you from getting sick. Based on what we know, people who have been fully vaccinated can start to do some things that they had stopped doing because of the pandemic. To learn more, visit: https://t.co/FJMon7WlFO. pic.twitter.com/AjnGbe62us— CDC (@CDCgov) March 8, 2021
Notably, on its website, the CDC clarifies that there are some guidelines that should still be followed, as we are not yet past the worst of the pandemic. "You should still take steps to protect yourself and others in many situations, like wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces," the CDC states. The organization goes on to say that Americans should "take these precautions whenever you are in public" or "gathering with unvaccinated people from more than one other household."
It is also important, the CDC says, to be cautious when "visiting with an unvaccinated person who is at increased risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19 or who lives with a person at increased risk." Additionally, everyone "should still avoid medium or large-sized gatherings" and "should still delay domestic and international travel" where possible. Finally, the CDC encourages everyone to "follow guidance at your workplace" and "watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, especially if you’ve been around someone who is sick."