Currents News Staff
Ten U.S. airlines and cargo carriers have a request for the Biden Administration: They want to get rid of mask mandates on flights and test requirements for international travel. Some European countries are starting to do that.
But not everyone thinks that’s a good idea.
“Those countries are lifting restrictions brutally from too much to too few,” said Dr. Hans Kluge, Regional Director for Europe at the World Health Organization.
The Federal Transportation mask mandate ends April 18, barring another extension. The White House says it’s consulting the CDC about lifting it earlier. That agency reports cases are trending down.
It’s also warning the new Omicron subvariant is more transmissible than the original version.
“Our vaccines work,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, “our boosters work, and it does not indicate more severe disease than the original Omicron.”
It’s still unclear who might need another booster. Some people have been clear: they don’t want to wear a mask. If the Biden Administration does lift the COVID-19 transportation mandates now, it can always re-impose them later.
“We look at hospitalizations for COVID-19,” said Dr. Walensky. “We look at hospital capacity, and, importantly, we also look at cases, so all of those go into the formulation as we used those metrics for future guidance.”