I've been fully vaccinated for quite some me now. Note, fully vaccinated means > or equal to 2 weeks after your second Moderna or Pfizer injection OR > or equal to 2 weeks after the Johnson & Johnson injection. Yet, besides the comfort of knowing my risks of contracting COVID-19 and/or experiencing severe COVID-19 or death are drastically reduced, my day to day life hasn’t changed all that much. I still wear a mask (despite recent mandates being lifted in my home state of Mississippi). I social distance. And it will be a long time before I’m comfortable being out and about in large groups of people.
So imagine the bridled excitement I felt a few days ago regarding the CDC’s new guidelines on those fully vaccinated! It seems there’s a very faint light at the end of this tunnel!
Here are the new guidelines:
First make sure you’re “fully” vaccinated. See above.
After meeting that criteria, you may visit indoors with other fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask or social distancing.
You may visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for COVID-19 without wearing a mask or social distancing. (According to a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine, the Pfizer vaccine affords decreased risk of contracting asymptomatic COVID-19 and thus transmitting asymptomatic disease).
Refrain from quarantine and testing following a known exposure if asymptomatic.
Even with these new guidelines, the CDC maintains that you should still:
Wear a mask and social distance in public.
Avoid medium and large in-person gatherings..
Get tested for COVID-19 if you have concerning symptoms (e.g., fever, cough, loss of taste or smell, headache, fatigue)
Follow CDC travel requirements and recommendations.
It's been the most challenging 12 months most of us can remember in quite some time. Yet, progress is being made one day at a time. We'll continue to get through this. Be safe and remember to “love your neighbor as yourself”!