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April 13, 2023
The director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggested parents wear masks inside of their own homes to protect unvaccinated children.
Dr. Francis Collins told CNN, “Parents of unvaccinated kids should be thoughtful about this and the recommendation is to wear masks there as well. I know that’s uncomfortable, I know it seems weird, but it is the best way to protect your kids.” Later, Dr. Collins walked back this statement in a Tweet, suggesting, “Vaccinated parents who live in communities with high COVID transmission rates should mask when out in public indoor settings to minimize risks to their unvaccinated kids. No need to mask at home.”
Similarly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not suggest families mask in their own home unless someone has COVID-19 symptoms. Although, by the CDC’s definition of symptoms, parents experiencing nasal congestion should wear a mask around their own children.
The COVID-19 vaccine is not yet authorized for children under the age of 12 or 18, depending on the vaccine. This is a concern for families amid new reports suggesting transmission among the vaccinated is possible.
The CDC maintains, “If your child is younger than 2 years or cannot wear a mask, limit visits with people who are not vaccinated or whose vaccination status is unknown and keep distance between your child and other people in public.”
ARTICLE: ANTOINETTE AHO
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: PEOPLE.COM