The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has backtracked and now says it is safe for Americans who are vaccinated to travel both domestically and internationally. Thank goodness the politics caught up with the science.
CDC: Vaccinated Americans Are Free To Travel (Cautiously)
The CDC now says:
Americans who are fully vaccinated can travel “at low risk to themselves,” both within the United States and internationally, but they must continue to take precautions like wearing a mask in public, avoiding crowds, maintaining social distancing and washing hands frequently, federal health officials said on Friday.
This comes not from political pressure, but data. CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky recently told Rachel Maddow:
“[O]ur data from the CDC today suggests, you know, that vaccinated people do not carry the virus, don’t get sick, and that it’s not just in the clinical trials but it’s also in real world data.”
When Dr. Anthony Fauci was asked last month to defend the science behind denying travel to vaccinated Americans, he could not do it, admitting it came down to a political decision.
Fauci, asked “what’s the science” for denying vaccinated Americans a return to travel, can’t explain.
“When you don’t have the data and you don’t have the actual evidence, you’ve got to make a judgment call.” pic.twitter.com/lftvNzgA6J
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) March 10, 2021
View from the Wing has been fighting the good fight, and taking a lot of heat for it. I’ve chosen to stay on the sidelines, though it does not take an epidemiologist to ascertain that the highly-effective vaccines mean that is much safer to travel than before. Indeed, it not only safer, but safe by any reasonable risk-benefit analysis.
The science is clear: approved vaccines are incredibly effective at preventing illness, hospitalization, and death. Yes, they even help in reducing transmission to others.
Note, the CDC has also dropped its rule requiring fully vaccinated international travelers to quarantine after returning to the USA.
As a COVID-19 “survivor” who had no smell for six weeks, I cannot underscore the seriousness of taking proper precautions like social distancing and wearing masks. This isn’t about a denial of the lethal seriousness of this virus.
And yet just like so much in life, finding that tricky balance is key. Perfect safety is simply unachievable. Some will be more cautious than others. That is fine and should be respected. But I am thankful the CDC has recognized what has been clear: vaccinations are effective and liberating.
Final word: get vaccinated. Get vaccinated ASAP. Under President Biden’s guidance, states must shortly make the vaccination available to ALL residents. Let’s push family and friends to get vaccinated so that our new “normal” can resume as soon as possible.
It’s time to get back to work. We have a stimulus package and infrastructure bill to pay for.