Fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear a mask or physically distance during outdoor or indoor activities, large or small, federal health officials said, the fullest easing of pandemic recommendations so far.
The agency said it was making the revisions based on the latest science indicating that being fully vaccinated cuts the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus to others, in addition to preventing severe disease and death.
The agency’s update further relaxes guidelines for vaccinated people as Covid-19 cases in the U.S. continue to drop. It comes as the CDC faces criticism from some public-health experts as being too cautious in easing pandemic precautions.
The CDC gave some caveats. The recommendations don’t apply, the agency said, to healthcare settings including doctor’s offices; transportation hubs like airports and train stations; correctional facilities and homeless shelters.
It also said the fully vaccinated should wear masks when required by federal and local officials and by individual businesses and workplaces.
The CDC said it would continue to update its guidance as more evidence emerges and more people get vaccinated.