Washington | Mask or no mask? U.S. health officials’ recommendation that those vaccinated against Govt-19 wear masks came as a surprise to local U.S. officials, experts and organizations, sparking heated debate and confusion on Friday. Country.
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Even in Congress, debates erupted, with some elected officials being pressured to remove their masks, despite calls from Joe Biden the day before that those who wished to hold it should be “treated with kindness and respect.”
This order, simple at first glance, has not failed to raise a complex question in a country that has long been the center of epidemics and the debate surrounding the mask, more than a year during its generalization, a political issue.
The recommendations announced Thursday by the country’s leading federal public health agency (CDC) will not be complied with: not only will it not apply to transportation and hospitals, but officials will also state that the mask “is not valid if required by federal, state, local laws and regulations” or “shop and business guidelines.”
A situation that keeps employers and local decision-makers in a state of poverty is forced to determine between scientific recommendations and the concerns of Americans, who are still reeling from the effects of the virus.
“Before this, masks were important, but all of a sudden they are no longer there,” said Evan Matta, 47, who worked at a travel agency in New York. “My fear is, how are you going to check if people are fully immunized?” I believe there are a lot of people who do not use the mask even if they have not been vaccinated. ”
In fact, small steps to verify: In the United States, a national “health passport” is clearly rejected.
Patchwork of rules
In New York but also in Washington, those in charge casually indicated that they were going to “read” the new recommendations.
As a symbol of this embarrassment, Jill Biden, the first woman to remove her mask the day before during a visit to a vaccination center (she shouted “we feel so naked!”), Again wore popular protection at a museum in the capital on Thursday.
Elsewhere, patchwork continues: In Minnesota and Pennsylvania, current obligations were immediately renewed. Virginia and Maryland finally announced their agreement on Saturday for their part. In Connecticut, the new rule does not apply until next week.
In many places, the recommendation does not change much in the end: in Texas, the obligation to wear a mask, for example, was lifted in March … including unannounced.
This question also arose for supermarkets, many of which had introduced the obligation for all customers to wear masks.
After a day of reflection, Trader Jose and Number One American retailer Walmart each announced that they would comply with the new recommendations. Instead, Aldi declared that he would maintain the position.
Other companies were reluctant: in General Motors’ factories, the time to “read” the mask new orders is tough.
The UFCW Distribution Association complained that “the CDC’s recommendations are confusing.” “Essential workers are often exposed to people who are not vaccinated and refuse to wear masks. (…) Should they become vaccinated police officers?”
However, most scientists, who have long considered health recommendations to be very cautious, praised the new announcements.
Vaccines work against variants and greatly reduce the likelihood of infection (and not only exacerbate symptoms), but in rare cases, the viral load is reduced, studies have concluded.
Thus, they show that vaccinated people (approximately 36% of the population in the United States) do not endanger themselves or others when they do not wear a mask. Not to mention that daily cases have fallen sharply nationally.
Moreover, in a country where the supply of vaccines is now out of demand, officials hope to encourage reluctance to fall.
However, some experts have expressed reservations, especially for areas with higher transfer rates: epidemiologist Caitlin Rivers may find it desirable to link this announcement locally to the condition of “less than 5 cases per 100,000 people a day”.
“Give people time to organize,” lamented Lincy Marr, an expert on spreading viruses.
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