Fully vaccinated people can gather without masks, CDC says
(AP Photo/Jessica Hill)NEW YORK – Fully vaccinated Americans can gather with other vaccinated people indoors without wearing a mask or social distancing, according to long-awaited guidance from federal health officials. The CDC is continuing to recommend that fully vaccinated people still wear well-fitted masks, avoid large gatherings, and physically distance themselves from others when out in public. The CDC guidance did not speak to people who may have gained some level of immunity from being infected, and recovering from, the coronavirus. AdOfficials say a person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the last required dose of vaccine. But some people who are fully vaccinated were pleased by Monday's news.
Will the US ever have a national COVID-19 testing strategy?
NEW YORK – As the coronavirus epidemic worsens, U.S. health experts hope Joe Biden's administration will put in place something Donald Trump's has not — a comprehensive national testing strategy. Such a strategy, they say, could systematically check more people for infections and spot surges before they take off. Our strategy has been no strategy,” said Dr. Michael Mina, a Harvard University researcher focused on use of testing to track disease. Some experts say the lack of such a system is one reason for the current national explosion in cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Amid complaints about shortages and delays, the federal government began sourcing and shipping key testing supplies to states, beginning with swabs.
2nd US virus surge hits plateau, but few experts celebrate
COVID-19 deaths do not move in perfect lockstep with the infection curve, for the simple reason that it can take weeks to get sick and die from the virus. Florida on Thursday reported 253 more deaths, setting its third straight single-day record, while Texas had 322 new fatalities and California had 391. The Associated Press found the seven-day rolling average for new cases plateaued over two weeks in California and decreased in Arizona, Florida and Texas. Those states, along with California, have been pouring large numbers of cases each day into the national tally. ___The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institutes Department of Science Education.
Postponed Tokyo Olympics hit 1-year-to-go mark -- again
The postponed Tokyo Olympics have again reached the one-year-to-go mark. That was before COVID-19 postponed the Olympics and pushed back the opening to July 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)TOKYO The Tokyo Olympics have hit the one-year-to-go mark again. That was before the COVID-19 pandemic postponed the Olympics and pushed back the opening to July 23, 2021. The Tokyo Games would be canceled this time if they can't be held.