Approximately 70% of Americans live in areas deemed low or medium risk for severe COVID-19 and can go maskless, according to new guidance released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The new guidance is based on a new tool the CDC will be using to assess individual communities' level of COVID-19 risk, called COVID-19 Community Levels. Community levels can be low, medium, or high and are determined by analyzing hospital beds being used by COVID-19-infected persons, new hospital admissions, and the total number of new COVID-19 cases in an area.
The new framework is intended to help communities and individuals decide what preventive steps to take based on the latest data, but patients may still have questions regarding how to determine their community level, what precautions to take based on the level, and how to best protect themselves against infection if they are immunocompromised. In the slides below, key takeaways from the CDC's new guidance to help you prepare.