Health Officials: Fully Vaccinated Can Skip Masks When Outdoors

A man wearing a face mask during the pandemic

As vaccinations for the coronavirus have begun to slow, federal health officials announced today that those Americans who are fully vaccinated will no longer need face masks when exercising outdoors, or at small outdoor gatherings or indoors with family members of their household.

From the New York Times:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stopped short of telling those people that they could shed their masks altogether in outdoor settings — citing the worrying risk that remains for transmitting the coronavirus, unknown vaccination levels among people in crowds and the still high-caseloads in some regions of the country.

Federal health officials and President Biden were announcing the updated advice on Tuesday, linking the news with the administration’s public campaign to get most American adults vaccinated by summer and trying to offer reassurances that some semblance of normal life can return.

But the C.D.C. is maintaining advice on other safety measures, saying vaccinated adults should continue wearing masks and staying six feet apart in large public spaces, like outdoor performance or sports events, indoor shopping malls and movie theaters, where the vaccination and health status of others would be unknown. And they still should avoid medium and large gatherings, crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, officials said.