The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expected to relax guidance on when and where Americans should wear masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, allowing most people to go without them in public areas. indoor public spaces, according to two federal officials familiar with the matter. .
The policy is expected to be announced Friday afternoon, according to an administration official. Related press first report change on Thursday.
Under current guidance, the agency recommends that anyone living in areas with significant or high potential for coronavirus transmission, as determined by case numbers, should wear a mask in public spaces during Homes such as gyms, cinemas and houses of worship have large capacity. That means people who live in 95 percent of counties in the United States should continue to wear masks indoors. The country is recording an average of about 76,000 new cases per day, down about 66% from two weeks ago.
The upcoming recommendations are expected to draw on newly identified metrics to determine if people in a particular geographic area are at high risk of contracting the virus. According to a federal official, who is familiar with the plans but was not authorized to speak about them, they will put more emphasis on hospitalization as a key risk measure.
These guidelines may rely on the capacity of hospitals in the local area as an important indicator of risk assessment. With the number of hospital admissions falling nationally, that could allow the majority of Americans to ditch their masks. About 60,000 people are hospitalized with Covid across the country, but these numbers have dropped by about 44% in the past two weeks.
Most states have relaxed their mask-wearing regulations, and some, like New Jersey, have announced plans to lift regulations even in schools. Others are getting ready to wrap up mask duties indoors in the coming weeks. However, an official recommendation from the CDC could sway districts that were more cautious.
Many businesses have switched to only asking for proof of vaccinations. But masks are now required on public transport, including planes. The current mandate is expected to remain in effect through March 18 and is subject to extension.
Last year, the CDC was harshly criticized for lifting mask restrictions too soon, only to allow the Delta variant of the virus to spread across the country. This time, however, many public health experts support relaxing mask guidelines.
Recent polls have shown that public patience with Covid restrictions is waning. Nearly half of Americans surveyed think the country should “learn to live with the ‘pandemic’ and get back to normal,” according to one survey. Yahoo News / YouGov survey. About 70% of Americans believe that “it’s time for us to accept Covid is here to stay and we just have to get on with our lives,” according to one person. recent poll of Monmouth College.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/24/health/the-cdc-will-soon-loosen-indoor-mask-guidelines-officials-say.html Officials say the CDC will soon relax its guidelines for indoor masks.