On Friday, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is allegedly set to announce an easing of mask restrictions on the national level.
Fox News reports that the updated guidelines will focus less on the overall number of cases, and will instead emphasize a community’s general risk of spreading the coronavirus. As such, current guidelines apply to individuals who live in communities with allegedly “substantial or high transmission.” The CDC claims, without evidence, that 95 percent of all counties in the United States qualify as “high transmission.”
The new guidelines will apparently not apply to most Americans, as the new criteria will factor in hospitalizations with the overall capacity of local medical facilities. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky has said that the new guidelines will focus more on “enhanced prevention efforts.”
“Moving forward, our approach will advise enhanced prevention efforts in communities with a high volume of severe illness,” Walensky said on Twitter, “and will also focus on protecting our healthcare systems from being overwhelmed.”
At a White House press briefing on February 9th, Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that “we are internally discussing, of course, what it looks like to be in the phase of the fight against the COVID pandemic where it is not disrupting everyone’s daily lives; where people are moving on and living, you know, lives free of, hopefully, masks at some point and many of the restrictions that we’ve all been living through over the past two years.”
The decision comes as the vast majority of states across the country have mostly lifted the controversial indoor mask mandates, including in states that are overwhelmingly controlled by Democrats. Even as most states began to relax COVID restrictions, the CDC and the Biden Administration begged for states to keep mask mandates in place; the sudden shift by the CDC seems to suggest that the mandates are now so widely unpopular that even the Biden Administration is prepared to finally abandon them.