It has been more than a year since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 as a pandemic. In the past year, more than 130 million people were diagnosed with COVID-19, and we have lost 3 million lives globally. Within a record time, several effective vaccines were developed. Given that the vaccinated population is rapidly increasing, the Centers for disease control and prevention (CDC) released new guidelines for the fully vaccinated population. (figure 1)
CDC recommendations for the fully vaccinated population:
- You can gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without social distancing or wearing a mask.
- You can gather indoors with unvaccinated people from 1 household without social distancing or wearing a mask. Unless they are considered to be at high risk for severe COVID infection.
- For domestic travel, you do not need to get tested before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel.
- You do NOT need to get tested before leaving the United States unless your destination requires it.
- You still need to show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States.
- You should still get tested 3-5 days after international travel.
- You do NOT need to self-quarantine after arriving in the United States.
- If you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19, you do not need to stay away from others or get tested unless you have symptoms.
Based on solid data, we know that all three approved vaccines in the United States are very effective in preventing the disease, especially deaths and severe forms. However, there are a few questions that remain to be determined in the next few months.
- What is the effectiveness of different vaccines on the various new COVID-19 variants?
- Can fully vaccinate people spread the disease?
- For how long is the vaccine effective?
Currently, in the United States, the average number of shots per day is 3 million. Earlier this week, the public health agency reported more than 4 million shots were administered in 1 day. According to the CDC, more than 60 million people are fully vaccinated and 104.2 million U.S. residents, or 31% of the population, have received at least one vaccine dose. With the current pace, vaccines will be available for every adult in the United States by the end of May. Since the beginning of this pandemic, we have faced a lot of challenges in different aspects but finally now as the number of cases is significantly decreasing and the vaccinated population is expanding, we are definitely heading in the right direction!
“The views, opinions and positions expressed within this blog are those of the author(s) alone and do not represent those of the American Heart Association. The accuracy, completeness and validity of any statements made within this article are not guaranteed. We accept no liability for any errors, omissions or representations. The copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them. The Early Career Voice blog is not intended to provide medical advice or treatment. Only your healthcare provider can provide that. The American Heart Association recommends that you consult your healthcare provider regarding your personal health matters. If you think you are having a heart attack, stroke or another emergency, please call 911 immediately.”