NEW YORK - "Personally, I would say I'm not ready to take my mask off."
That was Dr. Rabia Ali de Latour's reaction to the CDC announcing Thursday that vaccinated individuals no longer needed to wear a mask. There are however a lot of exceptions to the new rules.
"It's important to note that they're not recommending that everyone just go maskless everywhere. There's a lot of caveats involved in this recommendation," adds Ali de Latour who is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the New York University Grossman School of Medicine. "They're still recommending that if you go to a healthcare facility, if you're traveling anywhere, especially on public transportation or if you're in a transportation hub--like a train station or an airport--or if you're in a homeless shelter or any type of prison that you still should wear masks, but for everyone else--they're saying that if you're indoors or outdoors, you don't have to."
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Governor Andrew Cuomo announced current New York state guidelines will be reviewed in light of the revisions, and while Mayor Bill De Blasio added masks will still be important for schools, public transportation and healthcare settings.
Meanwhile, those who work in industries where interacting with the public is a huge part of their job -- like bars and restaurants -- see it as a huge step towards getting back to normal.
"I’m extremely excited for the day that they let us take them off," says Kyle Everett, a vaccinated bartender on the Upper East Side. "And people get to smile with each other again--who’s mad at that?"
"I’m fully vaccinated since March and I have no intent on going backwards on that," said one patron.
Many can't wait to lose the mask--while others can.
"There’s a lot of people fully vaccinated and that’s great--but it’s just a little too early because you are opening up that can of worms of people that are going to test it and cause issues," said one New Yorker.
Retail chains such as CVS, Walgreens and Macy's will also review their requirements for facial coverings following the new CDC guidance as well.