The number of counties where transmission of COVID-19 is substantial enough to prompt a suggestion that residents wear a mask is now reduced to one.
Earlier this week, Governor Janet Mills asked the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention to review the U.S. CDC's updated guidelines for face coverings. The result was a suggestion from the Maine CDC that residents of any county where the transmission rate of COVID-19 is 'substantial' wear masks whenever they're in indoor settings. This suggestion applies to both vaccinated and non-vaccinated people.
Originally, the Maine CDC said this suggestion applied to York and Piscataquis counties. But the U.S. CDC's transmission tracker, by county, is updated daily, not weekly. So those suggestions will change frequently. For now, York and Piscataquis counties have been downgraded to 'moderate,' while the transmission rate in Waldo county is now 'substantial.' This means that residents of Waldo county are now encouraged to wear masks whenever they're in public, indoor settings. The transmission status, by county, can be tracked on the U.S. CDC website.
While vaccinated people can still get the Delta variant of COVID-19, the symptoms will not be as severe, according to the Maine CDC. Since it is still possible for vaccinated people to spread the virus to unvaccinated people, health experts are suggesting the wearing of masks where transmission is substantial. This is a suggestion and not a requirement, so it will be up to individual businesses in affected areas to decide whether they want to modify their mask policies.