The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this week recommended all domestic travelers to undergo Covid-19 testing before and after they travel, even if they’re vaccinated.
The CDC urges domestic travelers to consider getting tested for current infection with a viral test as close to the day of departure and no more than three days before travel, regardless of vaccination status. CDC had only recommended Covid-19 testing to unvaccinated travelers before.
In a statement sent to AFAR Magazine regarding the sudden change of recommendation, a CDC spokesperson admitted that the vaccines are not 100% effective at preventing infection and can still spread the virus.
“COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing severe disease and death. However, since vaccines are not 100 percent effective at preventing infection, some people who are up to date can still get COVID-19. People who are up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines may feel well and not have symptoms but still can be infected and spread the virus to others,” a CDC spokesperson said in a statement.
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With cases and hospitalizations back on the rise in the United States, the agency is now asking travelers to test for COVID-19, using either a PCR or antigen test, as close to the time of departure as possible and no more than three days prior to travel—regardless of vaccination status. Previously, the CDC had only recommended getting tested before domestic travel for those who are unvaccinated.
The CDC considers travelers to be up to date on their COVID vaccines if they have received all doses in the primary series as well as one booster shot once eligible. A second booster shot is currently not needed to be considered up to date.
In addition to asking that all travelers consider getting tested for COVID no more than three days prior to departure, the CDC also advises all travelers to get tested after they return from their trip, especially if the travel “involved situations with greater risk of exposure such as being in crowded places while not wearing a well-fitting mask.”
As of May 18, the daily average of COVID cases in the U.S. was 103,231. That’s an increase of more than 50 percent compared to two weeks ago when the daily average was 65,891. Hospitalizations are also up 29 percent over the past two weeks to a daily average of 23,223, according to the New York Times’ COVID tracker.
Federal health officials on Wednesday warned that the upward trend in cases could continue and added that one-third of the U.S. population now lives in areas where people should be wearing masks indoors again.
As the Gateway Pundit previously reported, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said during a press briefing on Wednesday that Americans living in counties considered to have high levels of Covid-19 in the community should wear masks in public indoor settings. Americans who live in counties with medium levels of Covid-19 in the community should ‘consider taking prevention measures based on their own risk’ like avoiding crowds and wearing a mask.