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CDC report: Masks decrease spread, but on-premises restaurant dining increases it

Friday, Mar 5, 2021

* From the latest edition of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

What is already known about this topic?

Universal masking and avoiding nonessential indoor spaces are recommended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

What is added by this report?

Mandating masks was associated with a decrease in daily COVID-19 case and death growth rates within 20 days of implementation. Allowing on-premises restaurant dining was associated with an increase in daily COVID-19 case growth rates 41–100 days after implementation and an increase in daily death growth rates 61–100 days after implementation.

What are the implications for public health practice?

Mask mandates and restricting any on-premises dining at restaurants can help limit community transmission of COVID-19 and reduce case and death growth rates. These findings can inform public policies to reduce community spread of COVID-19.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

38 Comments
  1. - Amalia - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:16 pm:

    please wear a mask. even after you get the 2 shot or 1 shot vaccine. stop the spread.


  2. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:18 pm:

    No worries for me.

    After seeing health departments completely ignore health codes for the past 11 months, I’m not going to a restaurant for decades to come.

    Good job by those health departments, aiming for short-term and short sighted responses while causing significantly larger long-term problems for years into the future.


  3. - Precinct Captain - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:20 pm:

    And yet, we’ve spent since June of last year prioritizing bars and restaurants over school kids and teachers. Now the hacks want packed convention halls. Good grief.


  4. - Cool Papa Bell - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:23 pm:

    Mask wearing and a vaccine are going to knock virus out.. Keep your mask on, take your jab.

    People who became infected with SARS-CoV-2 after receiving one dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine harbored about four times less virus than did unvaccinated people who caught the virus, according to preliminary results posted to the preprint server medRxiv on February 8.

    https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/pfizers-covid-19-vaccine-reduces-viral-load-study–68439


  5. - BOE Member - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:25 pm:

    Dr. Ezike and the IDPH are such a disappointment to the state. Their competency or rather perceived competency has declined tremendously over the last year.


  6. - North Park - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:25 pm:

    ==Mask wearing and a vaccine are going to knock virus out==

    Too bad 40% of R’s are against one or the other of those things.


  7. - GC - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:32 pm:

    @BOE Member - To the contrary, I think the last year has been successful and a testament to their competency. Despite being underfunded (Rauner) and having no federal support (Trump), I still think IL had one of the better responses in the country. IL was decisive in controlling cases w/o mass casualties precipitating it like NYC or CA. There are areas for improvement but I am glad I lived here and not in *any* surrounding state.


  8. - Needs More Fiber - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:32 pm:

    * please wear a mask. even after you get the 2 shot or 1 shot vaccine. stop the spread. *

    Nope. Once most people have vaccines, no more masks. Enough is enough


  9. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:33 pm:

    ===most===

    Define “most”

    You grasp herd immunity percentages, right?


  10. - TheInvisibleMan - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:34 pm:

    === no more masks ===

    Good news for you. There’s no law or even guidance that says you need to wipe yourself after going to the bathroom.

    Not everyone understands the concept of hygiene, and some even feel inconvenienced by it.

    This is why I will never eat at a public restaurant ever again.


  11. - Chicago Cynic - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:48 pm:

    “Dr. Ezike and the IDPH are such a disappointment to the state. Their competency or rather perceived competency has declined tremendously over the last year.”

    Why? Because they’ve been advocating for precisely what the CDC finds has an impact? That is the definition of a non-sequitur.


  12. - Needs More Fiber - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 12:54 pm:

    * Define most *

    50.1% is the definition of most, but herd immunity is around 70%, give or take. Biden says we’ll all be vaccinated by May, but unsurprisingly, I don’t think he realizes May 1st is less than 60 days away. We’ll see.


  13. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:09 pm:

    We are roughly 7.5 million folks away from fully vaccinated to reach herd immunity.

    “Most” and herd immunity aren’t the same is the whole point.


  14. - DuPage Saint - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:14 pm:

    So is there any numbers or anyway to get numbers of how many people will refuse vaccine?


  15. - Rich Miller - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:16 pm:

    ===how many people will refuse vaccine===

    Huh?


  16. - Simple Simon - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:18 pm:

    Needs More Fiber…so what happens when 90% of Americans get a shot that prevents them from becoming seriously ill but they still get and spread the virus, making everyone a factory for producing variants? One of these days, a variant comes along that avoids our immune response and its our turn in the barrel again. Prevention is going to be a way of life for a while, perhaps long term.


  17. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:23 pm:

    === One of these days, a variant comes along===

    Let’s play “the here and now” not “what if”

    We all need to be vigilant, follow science, get vaccinated, stay masked until a tipping point is actually “in play” while doing all I’ve already typed.

    Good or bad speculation outside of the controlled things we know and do is folly


  18. - OldSmoky2 - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:24 pm:

    Biden said (two days ago) that the U.S. will have enough vaccines to vaccinate every American by the end of May, not that everyone will be vaccinated by May 1.


  19. - Lurker - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:32 pm:

    Saint, I only have anecdotal but I’m shocked by how many people I know think that my getting vaccinated was a dumb idea and they are not doing it. I had more than 10 at my church Saturday say no way they are doing it. Only one couple was under 70.


  20. - Cool Papa Bell - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    @Rich ===how many people will refuse vaccine===

    Huh?

    In wondering about the herd..

    About 9,800,000 people in IL are eligible to get a vaccine. A few polls put peoples willingness to take a shot at maybe 60%.

    So if only 60% of the 9,800,000 take the shot, we don’t really ever get to a herd.

    That’s why I’d say it matters if people refuse the shot. It also matters that 2,700,000 people are too young (right now) to get the shot.

    So here - where IDPH sets Phase 5 as “when vaccines or treatments are available” is prescient, because I’m not sure if 70% of everyone in Illinois will even take a shot.


  21. - Simple Simon - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:38 pm:

    OW…true that speculation can be unhelpful, but be sure that some scientist somewhere is thinking 10 moves ahead. More concretely, our kids are not eligible for a shot and won’t be for months or a year from now. The NG said 1100 kids under 10 in Champaign County have had COVID. Prevention will continue to be needed for the foreseeable future to protect them and other parts of society, and will not end when “most” people have the shot, as per Needs More Fiber.


  22. - Jocko - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:40 pm:

    ==Enough is enough==

    It’s thinking like this that led to 520K deaths, 208K of which were preventable. Your ‘freedom’ has let COVID drag on for five (to nine) months longer than it should have.


  23. - Rich Miller - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:44 pm:

    ===Once most people have vaccines===

    Define “most.”


  24. - Mason born - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:46 pm:

    Right now masks are protecting folks who can’t get the vaccine yet. Assuming the WH is correct with May 1 as a date the restrictions will kind of have to sunset after that. At some point getting the vaccine becomes as easy as ringing your MD and asking for it. Once we get to that point the only people you’re protecting are those lacking the good sense to get the vaccine. Just my 2c but these restrictions make no sense if the only people protected are morons.


  25. - Rich Miller - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:48 pm:

    ===Phase 5 as “when vaccines or treatments are available”===

    Widely available.


  26. - Groucho - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 1:51 pm:

    I would like to demonstrate the importance of wearing a mask. I have three children who attend three different private schools and whom all three have been attending school since last September. One attends a grade school with a student body of 1,000 students. The school is in full session. My other daughter attends a private high school on the northside of the city with a student body of 1,100. They are using a hybrid model. She attends two days a week. My other daughter attends suburban private school with a student body of 2,400. They too use a hybrid model.
    They all are required to wear masks at all times and practice hand cleaning and social distancing while in school. If someone is exposed or contracts covid they are quarantined and must remain home until they are released from quarantine. There are no exceptions to the mask rule. There has not been one case of covid being transmitted at school. If you follow the most basic and simple guidelines (wear a mask, wash your hands) you can dramatically reduce the spread of covid.


  27. - Needs More Fiber - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:23 pm:

    * 208K of which were preventable. *

    Citation please.


  28. - ChicagoVinny - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:26 pm:

    What Biden said was we’d have enough doses to cover every adult American by end of May, not start of May. Distributing those doses may still take longer, although we’re up to 2 million a day nationwide.


  29. - GA Watcher - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:33 pm:

    Fiber: President Biden did not say we’ll all be vaccinated by May. He said there will be enough vaccine supply to vaccinate all American adults by the end of May. The President later said it will still take months to get shots in all the remaining arms given the logistical hurdles of distributing and administering vaccines.


  30. - Pundent - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:41 pm:

    Taiwan, with a population roughly the size of NYC, has had less than 1K cases and 9 Covid-19 related deaths since the start of the pandemic. Vietnam 2,500 cases and 35 deaths. New Zealand 2,400 cases and 26 deaths. Each of them experiencing the “V” shaped recovery we’ve been chasing. The difference? They wear masks. It is quite literally the least we can do.


  31. - Rudy’s teeth - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:47 pm:

    For those who refuse to take the vaccine, I wonder if they hold the same attitude towards taking BP meds, cholesterol meds, insulin shots and so on. Would they say no to a knee or hip replacement or treatment for macular degeneration? Just asking.


  32. - Jocko - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 2:51 pm:

    NMF@2:23p

    Here’s the Lancet study…but you keep doing you.
    https://tinyurl.com/4fw4mrv3


  33. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 3:12 pm:

    === More concretely, our kids are not eligible for a shot and won’t be for months or a year from now.===

    There will be enough vaccine for all by May


  34. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 3:18 pm:

    - ChicagoVinny -

    I was on zoom call and didn’t refresh.

    Concur on your point, apologies.


  35. - Simple Simon - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 3:58 pm:

    OW…you may not be aware that the shot is not offered to kids under 18 (except for Pfizer which can go to 16). They are just now doing safety and effectiveness studies for younger teens. I believe they have not even started with younger children. They typically do this stepwise because kids of various ages can need different dosing or other factors, so adult shots may not work or be safe for kids. Fauci has said it will take months or a year to get down to the youngest children.


  36. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 4:03 pm:

    === Fauci has said it will take months or a year to get down to the youngest children.===

    And?

    The vaccine will be readily available for them.

    That’s the point.


  37. - Simple Simon - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 4:18 pm:

    Dear OW…the shot has not been proven safe or effective for children. They are unable to get it now, and may never be eligible unless the tests come back in the affirmative. Those tests will take months or more to complete, and during that time masks will be needed to protect them. That was the point.


  38. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 5, 21 @ 4:21 pm:

    === Those tests will take months or more to complete, and during that time masks will be needed to protect them. That was the point.===

    “Meanwhile” the country and the state can get closer to herd immunity.

    The population is getting older, not younger.


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