Most Americans aren’t following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on when to wear masks depending on their vaccination status, according to one new poll.
Americans as a whole, regardless of vaccination status, are wearing masks less than they were earlier in the pandemic, according to a new poll from Gallup. The group that’s wearing masks the most, though, are fully vaccinated Americans.
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An overwhelming 90% of fully vaccinated Americans said they have worn a mask within the last seven days in the month of May, Gallup found. That’s down from 95% in April. (RELATED: Despite Biden Administration Initiatives, Vaccines Struggling To Make Waves Among Black Americans)
The CDC updated its guidance to indicate that it’s safe for fully vaccinated Americans to ditch their masks in almost all situations on May 13. The agency still recommends that unvaccinated people wear masks in many places, especially indoors.
Despite that guidance, Americans who are more likely to be vaccinated are also more likely to still be masking. Among Americans who said they are not planning to get vaccinated against COVID-19, just 49% said they had worn a mask in the last week. The poll found 80% of partially vaccinated Americans said they had worn a mask, and 88% of unvaccinated Americans that still plan to get a shot had worn a mask recently.
While many states and municipalities have lifted mask mandates, some private businesses are still requiring customers to wear masks indoors. Other big chains, like CVS, Home Depot and Harris Teeter have lifted their mask mandates in stores.
The five-point decline in mask wearing for fully vaccinated Americans was also the lowest of any group, indicating that the people most able to return to normal are also the slowest to do so. There was a 10-point decline in mask-wearing among unvaccinated Americans, a seven-point decline in those planning to get vaccinated and a 16-point decline among the partially vaccinated.
Overall, 79% of Americans said they had worn a mask in the last week, despite more than half the country having been at least partially vaccinated. (RELATED: Daily COVID-19 Cases Are The Lowest They’ve Been Since The Pandemic Began)
Other responses collected by Gallup show that Americans are slowly but surely returning to their normal lives post-pandemic. The poll found 38% of Americans had been to a restaurant in the last 24 hours, up 8% from April. The same poll found 60% have been to a grocery store in the last day, up 6% and only 22% of Americans say they are still completely or mostly isolating from people outside their households.