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|CDC Now Says Summer Camps Can Skip Masks If Everyone Fully Vaccinated by Chases: 2:07am On Jun 02, 2021|
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday summer camps no longer need to require masks or social distancing if everyone is fully vaccinated, including the campers, in new guidance issued just ahead of the holiday weekend.
The new guidance says masks and social distancing are not required if everyone at the camp is fully vaccinated but said camps with unvaccinated campers or adults, including any camp for kids younger than 12 not yet eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, should still encourage or require masks indoors.
The new guidance also recommends that even in camps where everyone is fully vaccinated, campers should be assigned to groups that remain together the entire session and mix with other groups as little as possible.
The updated CDC recommendations say people generally don't need to wear masks outside, unless they are in a crowded setting or coming in close contact with others. Walensky has previously cited unvaccinated kids playing soccer at camp as an example of an activity where close contact and breathing heavily could increase the risk of transmission.
But CDC says camps should still follow state or local health guidance and could choose to continue to require everyone to wear masks if it's unclear who is and is not fully vaccinated.
Agency health experts said camps should encourage vaccination for everyone over 12 and should still support campers or adults who wish to wear masks.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky has faced pushback for guidance that called for kids to wear masks outdoors at camp this summer, even though transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19 is considered low risk in outdoor environments. Walensky has defended the guidance saying that many children are not yet vaccinated and that CDC wants to prevent outbreaks at camps that would force them to close.
Vaccination is the top priority. If we can all abide by the regulations to get vaccinated, we can not need a mask as soon as possible and within a safe range as soon as possible.
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