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A third of US should be considering masks, officials say

FILE - White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha speaks during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, April 26, 2022. Speaking to the Associated Press, Jha said Americans' immune protection from the virus is waning and the virus is adapting to be more contagious, and that booster doses for most people will be necessary — with the potential for enhanced protection from a new generation of shots.

WASHINGTON (AP) — COVID-19 cases are increasing in the United States — and could get even worse over the coming months, federal health officials warned in urging areas hardest hit to consider reissuing calls for indoor masking.

Increasing numbers of COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations are putting more of the country under guidelines issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that call for masking and other infection precautions. Right now, about a third of the U.S. population lives in areas that are considered at higher risk — mostly in the Northeast and Midwest.

Officials said Wednesday those are areas where people should already be considering wearing masks indoors — but Americans elsewhere should also take notice.

U.S. health officials have restated their recommendation that Americans wear masks on planes, trains and buses, despite a court ruling last month striking down the mandate.

This digital embed shows the latest CDC guidance on whether residents in a particular county should wear masks or not. This map will update. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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Associated Press

Associated Press

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