On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued updated mask guidance, recommending that everyone, including those fully vaccinated, wear masks in indoor public spaces in areas of “high” or “substantial” COVID-19 transmission. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health followed similar language in issuing its mask advisory stating that effective July 30, “fully vaccinated individuals are advised to wear a mask or face covering when indoors outside of your home if you have a weakened immune system, are at increased risk for COVID-19 or if someone in your household is at increased risk or unvaccinated. Masks are still mandatory for all individuals on public and private transportation systems (including rideshares, livery, taxi, ferries, MBTA, Commuter Rail, and transportation stations), in healthcare facilities, and in other settings hosting vulnerable populations, such as congregate care settings.” Additionally, the Cambridge Public Health Department urges residents – vaccinated and not – to wear a mask when indoors in shared spaces. To be extra protective, people who are living with someone who is immunocompromised may choose to wear a mask in all indoor settings beyond their own home.
On Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer announced that the bipartisan group of senators had finalized the legislative text of the infrastructure bill. Of interest to the life sciences, “the legislation includes several policies related to health issues, including incentives/requirements for domestic manufacturing of personal protective equipment, and offsets regarding refunds for certain discarded Medicare Part B single-dose and single-use drugs, language extending certain sequestration requirements, and a moratorium on the Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of General Counsel’s prescription drug rebate rule.”
And in Massachusetts, the state legislature begins its summer recess for the month of August.