Dr. Anthony Fauci said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be considering a change in its mask guidelines.
Fauci said changing the guidance on masks is “under active consideration,” Fox 9 reports.
The news comes just after the CDC relaxed its mask guidelines, but just as the number of COVID-19 cases began to rise again across the country.
The May guidance from the CDC said that vaccinated people could go without masks in most places, but the surge of cases from the delta variant of COVID-19 has health officials across the U.S. asking for the return of mask requirements, even for vaccinated people.
According to the Associated Press, vaccination efforts have slowed in recent months, with many still unprotected against the virus. Some places have tried incentives such as giving away money and handing out freebies to help get more people vaccinated.
Both the CDC and the White House said more than 99 percent of recent deaths and hospitalizations from COVID-19 are from those who are unvaccinated.
“This is an issue predominantly among the unvaccinated, which is the reason why we’re out there, practically pleading with the unvaccinated people to get out and get vaccinated,” Fauci said.
“What I would really like to see is more and more of the leaders in those areas that are not vaccinating to get out and speak out and encourage people to get vaccinated,” he added.
In an interview with CNN, Fauci also said that he was “very frustrated” with what he called an “unnecessary predicament” of soaring COVID-19 cases.
“We’re going in the wrong direction,” he said.
In addition to recommending masks for all people again, Fauci said the CDC may consider booster COVID-19 shots for the more vulnerable population, such as organ transplant and cancer patients.
According to the CDC, more than 162 million Americans, or about 49 percent of the total U.S. population, have been fully vaccinated against the virus.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Stevan Ovicigor
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.