Vaccinated Americans can gather without masks, CA exceeds vaccination goals

Photo of someone getting a vacccination
Matt Gibson/File
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, individuals who have been vaccinated are permitted to gather indoors with unvaccinated individuals from one other household without masks or social distancing.

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Surrounded by social distancing and mask-wearing signs at every walk of life, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, released guidelines Monday enabling vaccinated individuals to gather indoors in small groups without masks or distancing.

Arriving nearly a year after Americans were warned against gatherings as COVID-19 began spreading through the country, the CDC recommendations allow grandparents to be reunited with children and potential ease for individuals struggling from isolation.

Vaccinated individuals are now allowed to gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household without masks, according to the CDC website. An exception is if any of the attendees or anyone they reside with has an increased risk of illness from COVID-19.

Unless symptoms arise, vaccinated people who have been around COVID-19 infected individuals do not need to quarantine or get tested, according to the website. If, however, the exposed vaccinated person lives in a group environment, the CDC recommends staying away from others for 14 days and getting tested even if symptoms do not appear.

But as COVID-19 continues to take lives, people should continue wearing masks and social distance while in public, avoid large gatherings, delay travel and monitor symptoms, according to the website.

The new CDC recommendations come on the heels of California tripling its goal for vaccinating education workers. With a target of roughly 75,000 vaccines per week since March 1, the state vaccinated more than 200,000 teachers, school staff and child care workers in the past week, according to a press release from California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office. 

At large, 10.5 million vaccinations have been administered in California, with more than one in 10 people above the age of 16 vaccinated and more than one in four for people 65 and older vaccinated, the press release reads.

“This is welcome news for teachers, students and parents as more and more schools reopen safely across the state,” Newsom said in the press release. “We will continue working with our local partners to accelerate this effort in communities across the state so that all school staff have access to a vaccine within weeks.”

Maxine Mouly is the university news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @moulymaxine.