The country’s largest nurses union is blowing up the CDC over its recent recommended easing of mask restrictions, claiming the move “threatens the lives of patients, nurses and other frontline workers”.
“Now is not the time to loosen safeguards, and we are outraged that the CDC did just that while we are still in the midst of the deadliest pandemic in a century,” said Bonnie Castillo, nurse, president of National Nurses United. that is, it represents more than 170,000 members.
The stinging remarks came just days after the federal agencies for disease control announced that anyone fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can, in most cases, safely stop wearing masks and distance themselves socially.
“Anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in large and small indoor and outdoor activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing themselves,” said CDC chief Dr. Rochelle Walensky at a press conference on Thursday.
“You could certainly wear a mask if you wanted to, but in these settings we say it’s safe based on science,” she said.
Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York, and Bill de Blasio, Mayor of the Big Apple, immediately opposed the idea and refused, at least for the time being, to accept the updated guidelines. This adds to the confusion of people who are already struggling to figure out what to do to stay safe.
But Walensky doubled her agency’s stance on Sunday and said to ABC-TV’s “This Week”: “We now have a science that – especially in the last two weeks – has really just been developing and that shows that these vaccines are safe . “
“You are effective. They work in the population just as they do in the clinical trials, ”she said.
Walensky was asked separately on Fox News Sunday who the “vaccination police” would be to ensure people were properly following the guidelines. He said everyone should use “the honor system.”
Meanwhile, the Nurses Union has also questioned the fact that the CDC has said it will not pursue anyone who is fully vaccinated and may return to COVID-19 – unless the patients end up in the hospital or in the morgue. The agency said this would better focus its resources.
“This means the CDC is no longer tracking data necessary to understand whether vaccines prevent asymptomatic / mild infections, how long vaccination protection can last, and how variants affect vaccination protection,” the union said in its statement .
The CDC did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Post on Sunday.