File Photo – Gov. J.B. Pritzker | Photo: Illinois Information Service

Governor JB Pritzker issued an executive order on Friday recommending Illinois residents, including those who are vaccinated, to wear masks in accordance with CDC guidance.

Pritzker’s previous orders said that anyone who was not fully vaccinated should wear a face covering when in a public place and unable to maintain a six-foot social distance.

His updated order now says that all individuals, including those who are fully vaccinated, are recommended to wear a face covering consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance.

CDC guidance says that everyone should wear a mask on public transportation and people should also wear a mask when they have symptoms, test positive for COVID or are exposed to someone with COVID.

The CDC has marked Illinois counties as currently having low or medium community-level spread of COVID.

In counties with “medium” spread, those who are at high risk for severe illness are recommended to wear a mask indoors, the CDC guidance says.

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All people in counties with “high” spread are recommended to wear masks indoors, according to CDC guidance.

Also as part of Pritzker’s latest executive order, he updated masking and testing requirements for healthcare facilities and long-term care centers.

Weekly testing requirements for unvaccinated healthcare and long-term care workers have been removed.

Face coverings are no longer required in all healthcare facilities but are still recommended in healthcare facilities in areas of high community transmission.

The order also removes the state-issued vaccine mandate for long-term care and healthcare employees.

The new guidelines went into effect Monday and are in line with updated CDC recommendations, the governor’s office said. Federal requirements remain in effect for those facilities.

“Thanks to the tremendous efforts of our health care workers and residents, Illinois has done better at keeping our people safe with vaccines, boosters, and masking, which puts us in a position to continue to scale back health care requirements in line with the CDC,” Pritzker said.

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“COVID-19 is on its way to becoming endemic, like the flu, but it still poses a real threat to our immunocompromised and disabled communities. Here in Illinois, we look out for one another—it’s what defines us as Illinoisans. Let us continue to live up to those ideals by masking up and testing when we have symptoms and getting COVID-19 booster shots—as I recently did—so that we can protect our neighbors,” he said.