Milwaukee Health Department new guidance: Masks recommended indoors regardless of vaccination status

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Milwaukee Health Department on Thursday, July 29, issued new recommendations regarding the use of masks, in accordance with the guidance released by the Center for Disease Control on Tuesday, July 27, 2021. Everyone, regardless of vaccination status, should wear a mask when indoors with people outside of their household, the health department says. 

The new recommendations are supported by Mayor Tom Barrett's office, City of Milwaukee Public Health and Safety Committee Chairwoman Dimitrijevic, and Board of Health.

According to a news release from the health department, the dominant presence of the Delta variant in Milwaukee is causing an increase in positive COVID-19 cases. In the past month, the burden rate has gone from the “low transmission” category into the “substantial transmission” category, and the CDC’s updated masking recommendations are for those in areas of substantial or high transmission.

The health department says breakthrough COVID-19 infections are rare but possible for those who are fully vaccinated. While the vaccine effectively protects individuals from severe symptoms, hospitalization, and death, preliminary evidence shows fully vaccinated people who become infected can still spread the virus to others.

“We are calling on our community to step up and mask up to keep yourselves and your loved ones safe,” said Health Commissioner Kirsten Johnson. “The most effective way to combat this surge in positive cases is through vaccination, but until vaccination rates improve, we must be willing to take simple steps such as wearing a mask to protect our community and the most vulnerable.”

In addition to masking, the Milwaukee Health Department strongly advises anyone, regardless of vaccination status, who experiences symptoms or has come in contact with someone who has COVID-19, get tested and quarantine until a negative COVID-19 test is received. More information on free testing locations and hours can be found HERE.

If you or someone you know is looking for options to get vaccinated, hours and locations for walk-up clinics and a schedule of mobile clinics can be found HERE.

Share this article: