CORONAVIRUS

Utah Doctor Responds To New CDC Mask Guidance

Apr 27, 2021, 5:43 PM | Updated: 8:18 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The new mask guidance from the CDC opens up a lot of activities for fully vaccinated people. They can safely resume most activities outside without face coverings.

More than half of American adults have now received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC sees this new guidance as a way to help fully vaccinated

Americans get back to their lives while still being careful about spreading the virus.

“It’s pretty simple. I would just caution folks, and say don’t overthink it,” said Dr. Todd Vento, an infectious diseases physician with Intermountain Healthcare.

Bottom line with the new mask guidance: if you’re fully vaccinated you don’t need to wear a mask outdoors anymore if you are hiking, biking, or playing outside alone, or with members of your household. They still recommend masks at big outdoor events, like concerts, and crowded sporting events with strangers, and in public spaces where they are required.

Dr. Vento said it makes sense now because they know more about how the virus spreads.

“They’ve done studies,” he said. “They’ve looked at it better now. We have a lot better feel.. ‘we’ meaning public health entities… of where the risk is and how the virus particles spread indoors, outdoors, etc.”

Emerging data suggests that most transmission is happening indoors rather than outdoors. Less than 10% of documented transmission has occurred outdoors, according to the director of the CDC.

Indoors, fully-vaccinated people can safely get back to worship services, dining in, and exercise classes, if they wear a mask.

“For most of those activities, it looks like, masking would be the safest thing to do even having had the vaccination already,” Dr. Vento said.

But, data on whether vaccinated people can still spread infection to those who did not get their shots is limited. So, the CDC warned everyone should evaluate specific risk to friends and family when not wearing a mask. Fully vaccinated individuals may still come in contact with people at high risk for contracting the virus.

Vento said that’s another incentive to get vaccinated.

“Well, if you want to go indoors, or, you want to go outdoors in certain events, you know having a vaccine will make you safer.”

Dr. Vento points out that social distancing is better than wearing a mask. But, he said if you find yourself in a situation where are you don’t feel safe, you can always put the mask back on.

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Utah Doctor Responds To New CDC Mask Guidance