Vaccines for COVID-19 are being distributed in shipments across the United States. Each state has a plan in place that consists of phases to successfully administer these doses to the public. It is the hope of health officials that soon the COVID-19 vaccine will be available at local pharmacies and physician’s offices.
Deals have already been made with major pharmacies, including those at CVS and Walmart. With officials urging everyone to get vaccinated as they become eligible, many people wonder if vaccination means that they will no longer need to wear a mask.
Keep Practicing Guidelines
In short, no, do not ditch your mask just yet. You will still need to wear a mask even after you receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The reason for this is simple, there is much we do not know about the spread of COVID-19.
Both of the approved vaccinations for the virus are 90% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19, however, we do not know if this means you can still not spread the virus to others. This means that although it is likely that you will be safe from becoming critically ill, you must still practice all recommended guidelines in order to keep those around you safe. These include wearing a mask, social distancing, and handwashing.
Remember Those Who Are at Risk
It is also important to consider those around you who are unable to get vaccinated. There are some people who are allergic to vaccine. Also, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding may decline vaccination due to lack of studies on the effects of vaccination in these groups. We must remember these high-risk groups and continue to wear masks to protect these populations.
Masks Will Continue to be the Norm Until Further Notice
Until enough people are vaccinated, and we get this virus under control, these guidelines will remain a critical tool in putting an end to this global pandemic. Practicing the aforementioned guidelines contribute to our ultimate goal of creating herd immunity against COVID-19. The CDC is unsure of how long, and what percentage of the population will need to be vaccinated in order to develop herd immunity. This means that the majority of people are protecting those who are unable to receive the vaccine.
It is vital we continue to wear masks to aid in stopping the virus from wreaking havoc on our society. Continue safe practices and social distancing.
For More Information
For up-to-date information on COVID-19 guidelines visit the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website.