Murphy Comments on New CDC Guidelines

Updated May 14, 2021

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced that people who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 no longer need to wear a face covering indoors or practice social distancing, “except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.” Timothy F. Murphy, MD, SUNY Distinguished Professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and senior associate dean for clinical and translational research, calls the new guidelines a “huge, bold change.” After all, there’s no way to know if strangers are vaccinated. “When you go into a crowd and there are many people not wearing masks, it’s a very safe environment if they’re all vaccinated,” says Murphy. But that level of safety dips if there are plenty of unvaccinated people not wearing masks, so he “understands why people might be a bit nervous” about the lifted mandate.