Indoors, regardless of vaccination status, the Defense Department now requires masks.
Regardless of immunization status, the Department of Defense (DOD) is now ordering personnel to wear masks inside all of its indoor facilities.
Indoors at any installations and other facilities owned, leased, or otherwise controlled by the Department of Defense, all military personnel, government workers, onsite contractor employees, and visitors must must wear a face mask. Kathleen H. Hicks, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, wrote in a memorandum released on Wednesday.
The Department of Defense amended its policy to comply with new mask guidelines given by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday (CDC). In other places of the country, the CDC recommended that vaccinated persons start wearing face masks indoors.
After reports of “breakthrough” COVID-19 instances among vaccinated people, the CDC revised their mask recommendations. Individuals who have been vaccinated are still susceptible to getting COVID-19 and transferring it to others.
Vaccinated people, on the other hand, are significantly less likely to get the disease or experience long-term or severe symptoms. Individuals who have been vaccinated have a lower risk of becoming seriously ill or dying if they get the virus.
The Department of Defense’s mask order is only the latest step in the agency’s efforts to halt the spread of COVID-19.
A Navy official stated in early June that sailors can expect forced immunization soon. The Army declared in July that all soldiers would be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by September. When the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially licenses the available vaccines, the exact date for required immunizations will be determined.
All vaccines available in the United States have a “emergency use authorization” as of July 28. According to Dr. Thomas Russo, chief of infectious diseases at the University at Buffalo, the FDA wants six months of safety data from users in order to receive full FDA approval.
On May 7, Pfizer submitted an application to the FDA for complete approval of its vaccine, while Moderna submitted an application on June 1. Johnson and Johnson has not applied as of July 21.
Former US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta urged Democratic President Joe Biden to make COVID-19 immunizations mandatory for all military personnel in early July.
“This is a matter of national security for us.” According to The Hill, Panetta mentioned this in an interview with Gray Television’s Greta Van Susteren. “Those are the absolute last things you need. This is a condensed version of the information.