SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Following updated guidance from the CDC that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear face masks and practicing social distancing in most indoor and outdoor settings, Governor JB Pritzker and state health officials have ended emergency IDPH rules on masking and distancing.
A press release says the CDC will still enforce mask wearing in healthcare settings, congregate settings and on transit. Additionally, the Illinois State Board of Education will still require masks in schools, per CDC recommendations.
The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services will also necessitate masks in daycare.
“Getting vaccinated is the ultimate protection from COVID-19 and the quickest ticket back to normal life,” says Governor JB Pritzker. “With public health experts now saying fully vaccinated people can safely remove their masks in most settings, I’m pleased to follow the science and align Illinois’ policies with the CDC’s guidance. I also support the choice of individuals and businesses to continue to mask out of an abundance of caution as this pandemic isn’t over yet.”
“While the updated guidance from the CDC is welcome news, let me remind everyone that this guidance is only for those people who are fully vaccinated,” says IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “Individuals who do not have the protection afforded by one of the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines should still wear a mask. While more than 64% of adults in Illinois have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, we need to increase that number. To slow down disease spread and the development of even more deadly variants, we need as many people as possible to be vaccinated.”
State and federal health rules are still requiring unvaccinated people to keep wearing masks in most settings and both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear masks on public transportation, in congregate facilities, and in healthcare settings.
As of Monday, over 4.6 million people from Illinois are fully vaccinated — 58% of residents 16+, 64% of residents 18+ and 86% of residents 65+.