In light of the May 13, 2021 CDC announcement of masks being optional for fully vaccinated individuals in certain settings, it is important to clarify that this guidance does not yet pertain to healthcare facilities.
NMC Chief Medical Quality Officer Dr. John Minadeo clarified this morning, “Our current hospital policies have not changed and we will continue to monitor and follow the CDC and VDH guidelines.” Staff at NMC and in NMG practices (Northwestern Medical Group – the employed provider practices at NMC) are to wear surgical masks. Patients and visitors are to wear either cloth face coverings or surgical masks.
Here is the CDC’s guidance posted on their website (5/14/21): “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.” Even though this does not extend to healthcare at this point, it is another sign of progress on the return to normalcy. “We have all longed for this moment,” said CDC’s Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky. “If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic.”
We expect Governor Scott or Dr. Levine may speak to this at today’s press conference and we will be monitoring that. Stay tuned for updated guidance as we continue to progress toward normalcy.
If you are not yet vaccinated, you can still be vaccinated and there are even walk-in opportunities. Find out details at: https://www.healthvermont.gov/covid-19/vaccine/getting-covid-19-vaccine