CDC on new masking guidelines

February 28, 2022

With widespread population immunity, the overall risk of severe disease is now generally lower.

CDC Dir. Rochelle Walensky on new masking guidelines from the CDC.
  • The CDC released updated guidelines on mask-wearing late on Friday, Feb. 25.
  • These guidelines include a new map that provides a color key for guidance on what to do depending on the “COVID-19 Community Levels” in your area and your personal risk.
  • The CDC determines community levels of COVID-19 by using COVID hospitalization rates and the number of positive cases in general. Why does that matter? Here’s how CNN put it: “New CDC metrics indicate that about 28% of people in the United States live in a county where they need to wear masks indoors. Previously, CDC pointed to levels of coronavirus transmission within communities as a key metric for restrictions and recommended that people in areas with high or substantial levels of transmission — about 99% of the population — should wear masks indoors.”
  • Why It Matters: This new guidance shifts masking guidelines to be more heavily-weighted based on county hospitalization rates and personal risk rather than broader data on infection around the country.

Here is the CDC’s map.

Here’s a write up on the new guidance:

CDC relaxes Covid guidance allowing most people to ditch masks if hospitalizations remain low

by Jenna Lee,