Permanent Masks for Mainers?

Stephen L Dalton

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CDC Vaccine Map for 21 July 2021.CDC - Fortune.

Will masks become like the American Express card, "Don't leave home without it"? It’s starting to look as if it might.

Many states in the US that had previously done away with masks in public and others that made it a personal choice will return to mandatory masks as the Delta variant takes its toll, sending emergency rooms into “standing room only” or take a number and wait institutes.

NOTE: The CDC reminds citizens that wearing face coverings or masks prevents the spread of the virus; it does not protect you from getting it.

Experts theorize that the highly infectious Delta variant led to an upswing in the COVID numbers in Maine just as we start opening things up statewide. They say the Delta variant is prevalent in up to as much as 83 percent of new cases nationwide, up from about 52 percent just two weeks ago; however, only 68.3 percent of Maine instances, according to the CDC.

In Montana, the Dakotas, and other plains states, the Delta variant makes up 96 percent of new COVID cases. Even though these numbers are much lower than at one point last year when the country diagnosed nearly 200,000 new cases per day, the numbers rose sharply from two weeks ago.

The rapid spread of the variant and new COVID cases is ramping up the push for vaccinations as only about 68 percent of adults nationwide have received at least one vaccine.

Although some say the severe rise in numbers is proof that the vaccine does not work, we’re not close to the numbers required for “herd immunity.” Until we reach that, such claims are merely speculation and conspiracy theory-driven.

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Maine State Seal.Clker Free Vector Images - Pixabay

The situation in Maine

Many of the state’s RV parks and campgrounds are filled to capacity, and our restaurants and fairgrounds are ramping up.

According to the State of Maine Office of the Governor, the civil emergency for the State of Maine ended 30 June 2021. Therefore, masks are not required for 5-year-olds or older in school or childcare.

The Maine CDC does, however, recommend that those unvaccinated continue to wear a mask or face covering to prevent the spread of the virus and the Delta variant.

Doctor James Jarvis warns of cases of the delta variant in Maine

NEWS CENTER Maine warns, “The variant poses concerns to health officials nationwide due to its higher rate of transmission.”

The National CDC requires masks or face coverings for public transportation, buses, trains, and planes. They also recommend masks or face coverings for shelters, jails, healthcare settings, and congregate living areas. Plus, the CDC advises fully-vaccinated adults to wear the mask as an example to children in advance of a vaccine approved for youths.

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Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine.Javits - Flickr.

Businesses can require their employees and patron to wear face coverings and require vaccination as a prerequisite to employment. Remember, you are not fully vaccinated until two weeks after receiving both vaccines for Pfizer and Moderna or the single-dose from Johnson & Johnson.

The Governor’s office and the Maine CDC would like to remind everyone that the best preventive measure against the spread of the COVID virus is still the facemask and social distancing. The governor does not mandate fully-vaccinated Mainers to wear masks indoors.

When you cannot maintain a safe distance, the mask is the best preventive measure.

“Maine — The Way Life Should Be!”

References:

1. Maine Public Radio article, Medical Experts: Delta Variant Likely Contributing To Maine's Upswing In Coronavirus Cases by Jennifer Mitchell, dated 21 July 2021.

2. A Fortune article, The Delta variant causes 83% of U.S. COVID cases by Erika Fry & Nicolas Rapp, dated 22 July 2021.

3. The State of Maine Office of the Governor COVID-19 Response website.

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Stephen Dalton is a retired US Army First Sergeant with a degree in journalism from the University of Maryland. Top Writer in Virtual Reality, Sports, Short Story, Design, and Creativity. I especially like writing about design and home improvements.

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