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Changes after CDC updates mask guidelines

Many schools are removing mask mandates with the new county classification from the CDC.

LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. — On Friday, the CDC released new recommendations for mask-wearing and a new way to classify counties for those recommendations.

The CDC says it takes into account COVID-19 hospitalizations and new COVID cases. It breaks down the levels for each county into High, Medium, and Low.  

Credit: WNEP

Indoor mask-wearing is only recommended for counties considered High. If the county you live in is considered Medium, high-risk people can ask their doctor if they should wear a mask. In Low, no masks are necessary.

Credit: WNEP

Newswatch 16 is waiting for clarification from the CDC on some of the classifications because places like Sullivan County are listed as High, even though it had no new cases last week and does not have a hospital.

But the new guidelines are causing some school districts to lift mask mandates, like Wyoming Area School District, which is a relief to some students.

"It's hard when teachers ask you stuff, and you try to answer. It's kind of hard to hear what everyone's saying," said Abby Hughes about mask-wearing in the classroom.

Hughes is a WASD senior from Exeter and says not all students are excited about the change.

"There's some people who definitely still talk about it because they think we should still have to wear them," she explained.

Some people say no matter the recommendations of the CDC, they would rather be safe than sorry.

"After having it though, especially in a store like this, I want to have that on because I'm just a nervous wreck to get it again," said Nancy Smith from West Pittston.

But everyone Newswatch 16 spoke to said they were happy to have a choice in most cases.

"I think it just depends on the person, you know, some of them feel more comfortable with it," said Smith.

Watch more stories about the coronavirus pandemic on WNEP’s YouTube page.

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