A new spike in coronavirus cases–largely the result of the new COVID Delta variant–has left many Americans wondering what precautions they should take. Election Central takes a closer look at the situation and explains what guidance is available right now.
The Delta variant is a version of COVID that spreads as easily as chicken pox. In some places the number of people hospitalized has begun to rise again.
Current research shows that if you’ve been fully vaccinated, your chances of contracting the disease (including the Delta variant) are extremely small. Even if you do contract it, your symptoms will be much weaker and usually does not result in hospitalization.
If you are at least twelve years old and you haven’t already done so, the best way to keep yourself (and your loved ones) safe is to get a vaccine. Recently, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommended that even vaccinated people should wear masks indoors in high-risk places where the virus transmission rate is high. This is especially true if you have a weakened immune system, another underlying medical condition, or if an elderly or unvaccinated person lives in your household.
Some places, such as the San Francisco Bay area of California, have returned to mandatory indoor mask wearing, regardless of vaccination status.
According to the CDC’s newest guidelines, as long as you are travelling within the United States, you don’t need to get tested for COVID before you travel or upon returning. You also don’t need to self-quarantine. If you are travelling internationally, however, you must research what the rules are at your particular destination. For example, some countries require that you get COVID tested before leaving the U.S.
If you haven’t been vaccinated, you still need to show proof of a negative COVID test before boarding an international flight. Masks must be worn on any form of public transportation into or out of the U.S., and while at indoor transportation hubs, such as airports.