Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced Thursday that fully vaccinated Virginians no longer have to wear masks outdoors when alone or in small gatherings.
Mask use is still required indoors, and outdoors at large crowded events like concerts, sporting events and graduation ceremonies.
People are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the last required dose of vaccine.
“The CDC’s recommendations underscore what we have said all along—vaccinations are the way we will put this pandemic behind us and get back to normal life," Northam said. "Our increasing vaccination rate and decreasing number of new COVID-19 cases has made it possible to ease mitigation measures in a thoughtful and measured manner. I encourage all Virginians who have not yet received the vaccine to make an appointment today."
In addition, up to 1,000 spectators will be allowed for outdoor recreational sports, effective immediately. This change was initially scheduled to go into effect on May 15.
Northam said the next steps to easing mitigation measures will go into effect Saturday, May 15, and said he expects to be able to roll back the remaining capacity limits in mid-June as long as the Commonwealth’s health metrics remain stable and vaccination progress continues.
More than 3.7 million Virginians have been vaccinated with at least one dose, representing 57 percent of Virginia’s adult population, and 2.5 million Virginians are fully vaccinated, representing 39 percent of the adult population.