In yesterday’s newsletter, I wrote: “The Biden administration is expected to announce whether or not they’re extending the federal mask mandates on planes. I think they will be extended since Philadelphia just reinstated their indoor mask mandate after a huge uptick in COVID cases in the northeast.”
According to the Associated Press: “The Biden administration announced Wednesday that it is extending the nationwide mask requirement for public transit for 15 days as it monitors an uptick in COVID-19 cases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it was extending the order, which was set to expire on April 18, until May 3 to allow more time to study the BA.2 omicron subvariant that is now responsible for the vast majority of cases in the U.S.”
This should come as no surprise and personally, I think it’s a good move since once you remove the mask mandate, it’s not going to be easy to reinstate it. And of course, there’s the fact that cases are going up.
As you can see from the photo above of today’s New York Times Covid tracker, cases are going up big time — especially in the Puerto Rico and the Northeast. The good news is that hospitalizations haven’t gone up yet, which usually lag behind. So it’s smart to wait and see.
Dr. Leana Wen Just tweeted the news, stating: “CDC extends federal travel mask mandate for 15 more days, to May 3rd. I think this is a reasonable step, given their rationale that additional 2 weeks will allow better assessment of rising BA.2 cases. Articulating an off-ramp remains important.”
CDC extends federal travel mask mandate for 15 more days, to May 3rd.
I think this is a reasonable step, given their rationale that additional 2 weeks will allow better assessment of rising BA.2 cases. Articulating an off-ramp remains important.https://t.co/cFmA09LT9z
— Leana Wen, M.D. (@DrLeanaWen) April 13, 2022
Prior to today’s expected announcement, one popular doctor that I follow on Twitter, Jonathan Reiner, who is a professor of Medicine and Surgery at The George Washington School of Medicine & Health Sciences, tweeted: “If the administration ends the mask mandate for air travel at a time when cases are rising in half the states then we’ll know exactly what they are prioritizing now.”
If the administration ends the mask mandate for air travel at a time when cases are rising in half the states then we’ll know exactly what they are prioritizing now. https://t.co/NI38UGGB39
— Jonathan Reiner (@JReinerMD) April 12, 2022
It looks like the administration is doing the right thing so cheers to that. I know this is a hot topic and everyone has a different view as it became political thanks to a former president but with Covid cases on the uptick, I’m happy it’s being extended. How about you?
Updated: It’s official
BREAKING NEWS: TSA extends face mask requirement through May 3, 2022. TSA will extend the Security Directives and Emergency Amendment requiring mask use on public transportation and transportation hubs for 15 days through May 3, 2022. https://t.co/rY9W7Xkvcb pic.twitter.com/7cZ2stanEF
— TSA (@TSA) April 13, 2022
Covid cases are going up, wearing a mask is not really a burden. Let’s keep this restriction in place. Masks work, note that surgeons have been doing it for years!!