COVID-19 in Canada: Fully or partially vaccinated? This is when you should wear a mask and distance

·3 min read

While Canadians continue to receive first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccines, national guidance on what partially and fully vaccinated Canadians can do has now been released.

The advice does pair partially vaccinated and non-vaccinated people together, meaning that it is recommended that they follow the same guidelines at this time.

The guidance shows the outdoor settings are, generally, less risky than indoor gatherings, but there are still some circumstances where masking and other public health measures should be considered outdoors, including people who are fully vaccinated.

The information from the Public Health Agency of Canada also states that despite this national guidance, each person should consult local guidelines on gathering rules and other public health measures.

The guidance for gathering in different settings, based on vaccination status, is as follows:

Outdoors with a small group of fully vaccinated individuals (small family BBQ, camping with friends/family, swimming at the lake, sharing a hug)

  • Not vaccinated/partially vaccinated: No mask or physical distancing is necessary if everyone is comfortable with that

  • Fully vaccinated: No mask or physical distancing is necessary

Indoors with a small group of fully vaccinated individuals (dinner with a small group of friends, watching a sporting event on TV, sharing a hug)

  • Not vaccinated/partially vaccinated: Consider removing your mask and being physically close to the fully vaccinated individuals if everyone is comfortable with that, and nobody is at risk of more severe disease or outcomes

  • Fully vaccinated: No mask or physical distancing is necessary

Outdoors with people from multiple households who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, or their vaccination status is unknown (playing a close contact sport, gathering with a group of friends, child’s outdoor birthday party, outdoor wedding)

  • Not vaccinated/partially vaccinated: Consider wearing a mask if physical distancing cannot be maintained, especially if you or others are at risk of more severe disease or outcomes

  • Fully vaccinated: No mask or physical distancing is necessary

Indoors with people from multiple households who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, or their vaccination status is unknown (private celebrations or ceremonies, indoor birthday party, places of worship, fitness facility)

  • Not vaccinated/partially vaccinated: Wear a mask and maintain physical distancing, follow the measures put in place by the owner/organizer to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and keep windows and doors open

  • Fully vaccinated: Follow the measures put in place by the owner/organizer to reduce the risk of COVID-19, if you are at risk of more severe disease or outcomes consider wearing a mask and maintain physical distancing, and keep windows and doors open

Indoors or outdoors in a large crowd where people are closely gathering (crowded concert, organized sporting event, house party)

  • Not vaccinated/partially vaccinated: Wear a mask, follow the measures put in place by the owner/organizer to reduce the risk of COVID-19, maintain physical distancing wherever possible and consider only attending events where there are safety plans in place that follow local public health advice

  • Fully vaccinated: If you are at risk of more severe disease or outcomes, consider wearing a mask and maintain physical distancing, even if you are not at risk you may still consider wearing a mask at an indoor crowded setting, and follow the measures put in place by the owner/organizer to reduce the risk of COVID-19