TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—The Tompkins County Health Department published guidance further clarifying the most recent information from New York State and the CDC about what people can and should be able to do once they receive they’ve been fully vaccinated, either through the second Moderna or Pfizer dose or the sole Johnson & Johnson shot.

The guidance states that fully vaccinated individuals may:

  • Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
  • Visit indoors with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease, without wearing masks or physical distancing
  • Be exempt from quarantine and testing following a known exposure or travel if asymptomatic

“TCHD continues to encourage 100% of individuals to get vaccinated when they are eligible,” the guidance states. “TCHD reminds the public that even those vaccinated must continue to wear a mask, social distance, and reduce density when in public. Individuals should get tested when they are symptomatic. These steps are critical to stopping the spread of COVID-19.”

More from the health department: The CDC states that an individual is fully vaccinated 2 weeks after their second dose of a 2-dose vaccine, a link to the CDC’s guidance can be found here and on the TCHD website. The New York State Department of Health issued guidance related to travel which can be found here and on the TCHD website.

While the guidelines are relaxing in certain ways, caution is still necessary. The state has recently stated that gatherings at private residences are limited to 10 people but 25 people may gather outdoors; public space gatherings, which were previously limited to 50 people, are now limited to 100 people indoors and 200 people outdoors.

TCHD has published this guidance on the Department’s website and will continue to do so as guidance is expanded by the CDC and NYSDOH.

“We continue to be successful administering the vaccine in Tompkins County, and we’re encouraging 100 percent of those who are eligible to get vaccinated,” said Public Health Director Frank Kruppa. “It’s great to see more and more people get vaccinated, and this new guidance increases flexibility of what people  can do in their daily lives. (…) Even though the vaccines are incredibly effective, scientists are still working to confirm whether you can spread the disease once fully vaccinated. Therefore,  everyone must continue to wear a mask and keep distance from one another in public, and avoid crowds—this is critical to protect the most vulnerable until we can achieve herd immunity.”

The Tompkins County Health Department has also produced a new poster to represent what’s happened during the pandemic locally and what still needs to be kept in mind. The poster is available for download here on the Health Department website.

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Education & Public Health Reporter at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com