When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last month unveiled updated covid-19 guidelines that relaxed masking recommendations, some people no doubt sighed in relief and thought it was about time.
People have become increasingly comfortable being out shopping, attending live events, or meeting up with friends at restaurants. And many are ready to cast aside their masks.
Still, a recent KFF poll pointed to an underlying tension. Just as a large swath of the American public, 62%, said that the worst of the pandemic was behind us, nearly half were worried about easing covid-related restrictions — like indoor masking — too soon. The poll, conducted in February, found that 49% of adults were either “very worried” or “somewhat worried” that lifting pandemic restrictions would cause more virus-related deaths in their communities. About 50% were “not too worried” or “not at all worried” that death tolls would rise in their communities.
The CDC’s move triggered some of the same mixed feelings from the public that the poll uncovered and laid bare a split within the health care community.
On the one hand, there’s applause.
The CDC’s protocol change is an indicator that the nation is approaching a “transition from the pandemic phase to an endemic phase,” said Dr. Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association. Rather t …