faucet and soap dispenser
Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

Wait a Minute…Fully Vaccinated People Do Not Need This Preventative Measure?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States recently released a colorful chart — as part of its Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People — which recommends via illustrations how both vaccinated people and people who are not yet vaccinated can participate in various activities safely…

Wait a Minute…Fully Vaccinated People Do Not Need This Preventative Measure?

…and it uses two images of a generic person: one without a mask, which represents that preventative measures are not needed; and one with a mask, which represents that preventative measures are needed. Also, green represents the safest activity; yellow represents a less safe activity; and red represents the least safe activity.

Click on the chart for an enlarged view. Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States

The chart seems to be sensible, for the most part — but one area caught my eye, which is located below the chart…

Click on the screen shot for an enlarged view. Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States

…and while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention correctly and appropriately recommends that people who are not vaccinated should wear a mask, stay six feet apart, and wash hands as preventative measures, the agency claims that fully vaccinated people need only wear a mask — and nothing else.


Wash hands
Photograph ©2016 by Brian Cohen.

Although the preventative measures which are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention seem to specifically be aimed at preventing people from contracting and spreading the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, my concern is that the area which is outlined in the red rectangle can be mistaken to claim that fully vaccinated people no longer need to wash their hands — that that preventative measure is generally optional.

I attribute an important part of my success of not contracting a single airborne illness in many years to washing my hands thoroughly on a regular basis — and not to the point of being obsessive compulsive, either. Despite not being able to prove that definitively, the recommendations for washing hands by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for many years supports what I do.

As for distancing, I wrote in this article called 5 Reasons Why I Have Not Changed Anything Despite 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic back on Monday, March 23, 2020: “Unless I am in a gregarious mood — which is not typical for me — I arguably pretty much invented the practice of avoiding other people whenever possible; so the recommendation of distancing myself at least six feet from other people requires no change on my part.” Vaccinated or not, I intend to continue this practice.

My opinion is that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should have either recommended that all people should stay six feet apart and wash hands as preventative measures — or perhaps left out what is in the red rectangle altogether.

I have written numerous articles over the years espousing the virtues and benefits of properly and thoroughly washing your hands:

All photographs ©2016 and ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

  1. I find the entire chart to be juvenile and borderline ridiculous. That said, it is terribly misleading at best… wash your hands and stay a bit away from strangers as much as possible. That has been my plan since day one – and it has served me well so far.

  2. What is wrong with this is a series on The Gate. What is wrong is the second green drawing under the unvaccinated. (“Attend a small, outdoor gathering with fully vaccinated family and friends”). It should show “not applicable”, not a green face. This is because if you are unvaccinated, the gathering is not with fully vaccinated people but rather a mixed group of vaccinated and unvaccinated. It also wrongly suggests that one unvaccinated person is ok which then would lead some people to think “I should be that one person”.

    I also make note of a potential flaw in logic with the usually astute Brian, who notes not getting a single airborne illness for years because of hand washing. The nature of the common cold, influenza A, and Covid-19 are different. Covid-19 is thought to be mostly transmitted by airborne means but some fomite or hand contact means. Therefore, handwashing alone is probably insufficient. Furthermore, the transmissibility of the common cold is both airborne and by rubbing your face or nose with a contaminated hand but that the viral load needed to become ill is somewhat high. With Covid-19, the amount of virus particles needed for transmission is thought to be lower, which cannot be overcome simply by handwashing (which counteracts mostly the dirty hands rubbing your face and nose).

    The lower amount of virus particles needed for Covid-19 infection appears to be lower, as evidenced by choir groups who all got sick while singing (but a choir group doesn’t always get the common cold while singing).

    The magnitude of potential suffering (long term brain fog in young people or need for a lung transplant in young people or need for ICU care in young people) is significant enough that I would recommend a Covid-19 vaccine, particularly the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine and much more recommended than the yearly flu vaccine.

    The greater transmissibility of Covid-19 is demonstrated by the higher number of Covid-19 cases than the usual number of influenza cases. Also the number of deaths from Covid-19 is much higher than for influenza.

  3. As a scientist who has studied the virus I challenge Fauci and all other Government Experts to point to one verified case of Covid that WAS NOT INHALED THROUGH THE AIR. Washing hands has indeed prevented some disease but not Covid. Period. Billions of dollars and millions of person-hours focused WRONG, where more emphasis on ventilation, quality masks, and MUCH MORE THAN 6 FEET WOULD HAVE SAVED COUNTLESS LIVES.

  4. It’s a simple omission mistake. Shoot the proofreader as everything seems to require someone to blame. The poster wouldn’t even be necessary if people weren’t too stupid to get vaccinated, and if it leads to someone out there not washing their hands anymore, it’s further evidence these types of posters are actually needed.

  5. Nobody should have to wear a mask if vaccinated. That is not only my opinion, it’s the opinion of some infectious disease specialists,

    1. How about if your car has airbags, no need to wear a seat belt. Except its much easier to get Covid-19 than to die in a car crash.

  6. It seems that the information regarding vaccinated people on the chart might be too good to be true. One should know that vaccines are not a placebo-kind-of-effect drug or even a magic pill in which it gives a 100% protection thing. In my own opinion, vaccinated or not, one should always observe the usual health measures. Vaccines, after all, are just created to boost the antibodies that will help the body fight against a disease.

    No matter what activity a person is in, he or she can still contract the virus regardless if he or she is vaccinated or not. Apart from that, the vaccines have not yet been fully studied in terms of its efficacy and outcomes.

    1. “Vaccinated or not, one should always observe the usual health measures”. Usual health measures say that when you have been vaccinated, you can go about your life assuming that you are no longer at risk from the threat against which you have been vaccinated.

      “Vaccines, after all, are just created to boost the antibodies that will help the body fight against a disease.” That’s precisely why they are our best hope to return to a normal life as quickly as possible and why so much money was spent on accelerating development.

      “The vaccines have not yet been fully studied in terms of its efficacy and outcomes.” I disagree. Multiple studies show efficacy of more than 95% for most of the vaccines, and because we are in pandemic, there is no shortage of reliable data to back these statistics.

      1. No one knows the long-term effects of these vaccines. The constant shaming of those who have not yet chosen to vaccinate is disgusting.

        My immune system has held strong on its own volition – I have been in the community daily for 18 months with no ailment. Furthermore, I have no reason to believe I have given anything to anyone (no antibodies per regular Red Cross donations).

        My perfectly healthy young adult child was guilted into getting a vaccine by her college. She suffered horrible side effects including extremely high fever (near febrile seizure levels), blinding headaches, an inability to use her legs for hours… for what? They have already reached out to tell her she needs a booster to cover new variants! She was healthy before… she still has arm pain and is inordinately tired… who knows what she will suffer from now on from these vaccines.

        We are all subjected to harmful things that can kill us and those around us… that is part of living – and ultimately dying. The continued extreme focus on this one item is ridiculous.

        1. Nobody should shame anyone, but disagreeing with someone isn’t shaming them. I didn’t tell anyone to get vaccinated (even though I personally think people should). I’m just pointing out why I believe that it’s wrong to continue restrictions for people that have been vaccinated.

          1. I completely agree about not continuing restrictions for those vaccinated, I also do not believe in continuing restrictions for those who are unvaccinated. Life must go on.

            And, to be clear, I did not mean to specifically accuse you of vaccine-shaming – but it is prevalent on Boarding Area and in the community as a whole.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.