After Shot: Life in a Partially Vaccinated World

With millions of people receiving vaccines each day, Americans are breathing sighs of relief as an end to COVID-19 restrictions appear to be in sight. And as Indiana lifts it’s mask mandate on April 6, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is tapping the brakes a bit with this message: Don’t shed those masks just yet.

In a statement issued in early March, the CDC acknowledged that some precautions can be relaxed for people who are fully vaccinated but cautioned that we all should continue to follow basic prevention practices to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

The official guidance is straightforward. Those people who are fully vaccinated may:

  • visit with other fully vaccinated people without wearing masks or staying 6 feet apart.
  • visit with unvaccinated people from one other household indoors without wearing masks or staying 6 feet apart if everyone in the other household is at low risk for severe disease.

The CDC explained that it determines a person to be “fully vaccinated” two weeks after receiving the final dose of a two-shot vaccine or two weeks after receiving the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Even after being fully vaccinated, you should continue to wear masks in public, avoid large crowds and follow other precautions.

People who have not been vaccinated should continue to follow stringent precautions until they become fully vaccinated. To find a vaccination site near you, go to

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