COVID cases have risen in the last 2 weeks, with the New York Times reporting a 111% increase in the U.S. This brings the national average to 26,494 cases. There has also been a 22% increase in hospitalizations and a 5% increase in COVID-related deaths. While this is concerning, this rise is mainly in hotspots of the U.S. where vaccination rates are low.    

A recent study from Israel found that the Pfizer vaccine was just 64% effective in preventing symptomatic illness in fully vaccinated people. At the same time, the report found that the vaccine was 93% effective at preventing hospitalizations and serious illness—a significant benefit, experts say.

With that being said, according to the CDC, if you are fully vaccinated you can resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic. Fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.

People are considered fully vaccinated:

  • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
  • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine

If you are not fully vaccinated, get vaccinated! If you’re not willing to do so, the CDC recommends abiding by the following guidelines:

  • Continue to wear a mask in public
  • Stay 6 feet away from others
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces
  • Wash your hands often
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Clean and disinfect