For more information and to find a vaccine near you, visit SCLHealth.org/COVIDVaccine
So you’re fully vaxed? Nice work. We’re proud of you for doing your part in keeping yourself and others safe. But before you book a vacation and plan a party, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the CDC’s latest recommendations for life after the vaccine.
First: safety check. Being “fully vaccinated” means that it's been two weeks after your second shot in a two-dose series like Pfizer or Moderna, or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine like Johnson & Johnson. That two-week waiting period gives your body enough time to build up COVID-19 antibodies - those amazing, infection-fighting heroes who make sure you have a healthy immune response if you come in contact with the virus. Still feeling good about your fully-vaxed status? Let’s talk about the things you can safely do and where you still might want to exercise caution.
When You've Been Fully Vaccinated
Download and print: What You Can Do Once You Have Been Fully Vaccinated
DO: HANG OUT SANS MASK WITH FULLY VACCINATED FRIENDS AND FAMILY
Both indoors and outdoors, the vaccine makes the risk of anyone getting sick so low, a mask isn't necessary.
DON’T: GO WITHOUT A MASK IN CROWDED, PUBLIC PLACES
It’s still important to take measures to protect those who are high risk or who aren't vaccinated. While it's highly unlikely that you can spread the virus after being vaccinated, experts are still trying to confirm that the risk is totally eliminated. Until that happens, keep those masks on in public spaces where you cannot properly socially distance.
Once vaccinated, it is safer to travel both internationally and domestically. You’ll no longer have to expect a pre or post-trip COVID test or quarantine period.
DON’T: TRAVEL WITHOUT CAUTION
Restrictions are ever-changing and depend on your destination, so be sure to check up on local advisories. Also, be mindful of different variants emerging in different countries. And of course, be prepared to wear a mask if you travel by plane or public transportation.
DO: TAKE THINGS AT YOUR OWN PACE
If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask, even around your vaccinating friends, go for it. Never feel pressured to hang out in a group or in public spaces if you don’t feel ready.
DON’T: EXPECT EVERYTHING TO BE “NORMAL”
While positive advancements in fighting COVID-19 are being made, getting back to our pre-COVID lives might not be so immediate. Try to be patient and remember to put safety first.
Further Information From The CDC:
Fully vaccinated people can:
- Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
- Visit with unvaccinated people (including children) from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
- Participate in outdoor activities and recreation without a mask, except in certain crowded settings and venues
- Resume domestic travel and refrain from testing before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel
- Refrain from testing before leaving the United States for international travel (unless required by the destination) and refrain from self-quarantine after arriving back in the United States
- Refrain from testing following a known exposure, if asymptomatic, with some exceptions for specific settings
- Refrain from quarantine following a known exposure if asymptomatic
- Refrain from routine screening testing if asymptomatic and feasible
Fully vaccinated people should continue to:
- Take precautions in indoor public settings like wearing a well-fitted mask
- Wear well-fitted masks when visiting indoors with unvaccinated people who are at increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease or who have an unvaccinated household member who is at increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease
- Wear well-fitted masks when visiting indoors with unvaccinated people from multiple households
- Avoid indoor large-sized in-person gatherings
- Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms
- Follow guidance issued by individual employers
- Follow CDC and health department travel requirements and recommendations