The WCCHD COVID-19 Phased Gating Stages Chart mitigation recommendations have been updated to reflect the recent changes to the CDC Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People.

Fully vaccinated people (in non-healthcare settings) can now resume activities without wearing masks or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance. Quarantining following a known exposure if asymptomatic is now not necessary, however, fully vaccinated people should continue to get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

WCCHD recommends that schools continue masking and using other coronavirus prevention strategies for at least the rest of this school year.

The Food and Drug Administration expanded the emergency use authorization for Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine last week to include people 12 to 15 years old. Children under the age of 12 are not yet eligible to receive a Covid-19 vaccine in the US.

“The data has shown us that the vaccines are working in the real world, including against the variants that are currently circulating in Texas,” said Derrick Neal, WCCHD Executive Director.  “While this is an important leap towards moving back to normalcy, we must stay vigilant and take those smaller steps to continue to protect those among us that cannot get vaccinated yet – children younger than 12 and those immunocompromised. We cannot truly celebrate until we reach herd immunity.”

According to the WCCHD COVID-19 Phased Gating Stages Chart, to move from Orange (High Community Spread) to Yellow (Moderate Community Spread) phase, all three indicators below need to be met to move to Yellow phase:

  1. the incidence rate needs to be below 7.0 for 14 consecutive days. Since 5/13/21, the incidence rate has dropped below 7.0. The rate needs to stay below 7.0 until 5/27/21.
  2. the positive test rate needs to be below 10% for 14 consecutive days. Since 2/27/21, the positive test rate has been below 10%.
  3. the GA-34 Total TSA rate for Region O needs to be decreasing for 14 consecutive days. The TSA rate has been below 15% since 1/23/2021 and continues to decline.

For more information on COVID-19 please visit www.wcchd.org/COVID-19.