Face Covering Guidance

On July 27, 2021, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued new guidance that includes mask use for some people in some situations and locations.  This new guidance also recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status.

The new CDC guidance is based on the rate of community transmission, which includes new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population over the last seven days and the percentage of positive diagnostic tests in the last seven days. In addition to community transmission, the Dubuque County Public Health Incident Management Team will continue to monitor local health system capacity, vaccination coverage, early detection of increases in COVID-19 cases, and populations at risk for severe outcomes, as recommended by the new CDC guidance.

Dubuque County's current level of community transmission is HIGH, based on the Aug. 11-17 time period. This data indicates that Dubuque County residents should follow these guidelines:

Guiding Principles for Fully Vaccinated People

  • Outdoor activities pose minimal risk to fully vaccinated people.
  • Most indoor activities pose low risk to fully vaccinated people, especially in areas with low or moderate transmission (Dubuque's current level is HIGH transmission).
  • Infections happen in only a small proportion of people who are fully vaccinated, even with the Delta variant.
  • Fully vaccinated people who become infected with the Delta variant can transmit it to others.

To reduce their risk of becoming infected with the Delta variant and potentially spreading it to others, the CDC recommends that fully vaccinated people evaluate these factors based on their individual situation/circumstances:

  • Wear a mask in public indoor settings if they are in an area of substantial or high transmission,
  • Fully vaccinated people might choose to mask regardless of the level of transmission, particularly if they or someone in their household is immunocompromised or at increased risk for severe disease, or if someone in their household is unvaccinated.
  • Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Isolate if they have tested positive for COVID-19 in the prior 10 days or are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Get tested 3-5 days after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days after exposure or until they receive a negative test result.
  • Continue to follow any applicable federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations.

Guidance for People NOT Fully Vaccinated

  • Get vaccinated if you can.
  • Wear a mask in public indoor settings.
  • Get tested if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

More details on the CDC's new guidance
Ways to Get Vaccinated