Masks, Distancing Can Be Relaxed If You Are Vaccinated, EU Says


Social distancing rules and mask requirements can be relaxed for those who get vaccinated, the European Union’s agency for disease prevention said, adding to signs that an accelerated rollout of shots against the coronavirus can pave the way for a gradual return to normality.

When fully vaccinated individuals meet other fully vaccinated individuals, physical distancing and the wearing of face masks can be relaxed, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said in a set of guidelines published Wednesday. The rules can be relaxed even when vaccinated meet people who have still to get the shot, as long there are no risk factors for severe disease or lower vaccine effectiveness in anyone present.

The reasoning is that people who have received the vaccines have a very low risk of developing severe illness, while the risk of contracting the virus from someone who has been vaccinated is also low.