(RxWiki News) Unfortunately, the pandemic isn't over yet. Health officials are still updating travel recommendations as conditions change.
This most recent update may come as a surprise to those who were happy to see the end of the mask mandate for public transportation.
Now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that everyone who is at least 2 years old wear a mask or well-fitting respirator when using public transit.
That includes inside airplanes, trains, buses and similar forms of shared transportation, as well as the airports, stations and other hubs that surround these travel methods.
This new recommendation includes both transit passengers and workers, and it comes as a result of changing conditions in the pandemic.
"This public health recommendation is based on the currently available data, including an understanding of domestic and global epidemiology, circulating variants and their impact on disease severity and vaccine effectiveness, current trends in COVID-19 community levels within the United States, and projections of COVID-19 trends in the coming months," according to a CDC press release.
This new recommendation is about more than just personal protection from COVID infection, said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky.
"Additionally, it is important for all of us to protect not only ourselves, but also to be considerate of others at increased risk for severe COVID-19 and those who are not yet able to be vaccinated," she said in a press release. "Wearing a mask in indoor public transportation settings will provide protection for the individual and the community."
The CDC noted that staying current on COVID-19 vaccines and boosters and avoiding large crowds are also effective COVID-19 prevention methods.
If you have questions or concerns about your COVID-19 risk, speak with your health care provider.