(WGHP) — The CDC is giving fully vaccinated Americans permission to ditch the mask.
Doctors say science convinced the public health agency to lift mask mandates, except under certain circumstances.
Despite the new guidelines, North Carolina is still requiring people to wear face coverings indoors as officials review the new recommendations.
Local health directors hope state health officials make a timely decision to help minimize confusion.
“I do hope that the DHHS is clear, and they quickly send out their guidance to see how they are going to respond to the CDC’s recommendations,” said Joshua Swift, the Forsyth County Public Health director.
Some Greensboro business leaders are encouraged by the relaxed restrictions for vaccinated people, but they also anticipate some challenges.
“What I also thought regarding the Carolina Theatre was we are not going to be able to enforce this because how do you control people who do and who don’t, so we are probably going to continue with what we’ve got right now,” said Brian Gray, the executive director at the Carolina Theatre of Greensboro.
Gray says he hopes the community continues to support the historic venue, but it’s impossible to please everyone.
“We are going to lose some who say, if I have to wear a mask I’m not coming and others that say, if I don’t have to wear mask, I don’t feel safe,” Gray said.
The CDC says people may choose to continue wearing masks even if they are fully vaccinated.
“I feel like it gives off a better look when you still have your mask on, even if you have been vaccinated, to show that you care more about other people and your environment and stuff,” Ankhusmet Lynch-Wade said.
Overall, doctors and community leaders hope the new guidelines encourage everyone to get their spot for the shot.
“They don’t like the mask because they think it’s hard to breathe, or it’s hard to be able to hear people. I think now they will be more willing to get the vaccine, just so they won’t have to wear the mask more often,” Cayla Peterman said.