The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now recommending masks be worn indoors by all people in counties that are reporting substantial or high levels of community transmission of COVID-19.

As of today, forty-four of Minnesota's eighty-seven counties meet that criteria. The revised guidance comes as concerns grow regarding a nationwide spike in delta variant COVID-19 infections.

Last week the CDC announced that it was recommending vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals alike return to wearing masks indoors in parts of the U.S. where the delta variant of the coronavirus is fueling infection surges.

Yesterday's 35 Counties Recommended for Indoor Masks

Centers for Disease Control
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Today's 44 Counties Recommended for Indoor Masks

Centers for Disease Control

CDC Recommends Indoor Mask Wearing in These Minnesota Counties

  • Aitkin County (substantial risk)
  • Anoka County (substantial risk)
  • Benton County (substantial risk)
  • Big Stone County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Carver County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Chicago County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Crow Wing County (substantial risk)
  • Dakota County (substantial risk)
  • Dodge County (high risk)
  • Douglas County (substantial risk)
  • Faribault County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Fillmore County (substantial risk)
  • Freeborn County (substantial risk)
  • Hennepin County (substantial risk)
  • Houston County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Hubbard County (substantial risk)
  • Isanti County (substantial risk)
  • Kandiyohi County (substantial risk)
  • Kittson County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Le Sueur County (substantial risk)
  • Lake County (high risk)
  • Lake of The Woods County (substantial risk)
  • Lyon County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Mcleod County (substantial risk)
  • Meeker County (substantial risk) ← Upgraded to high today
  • Morrison County (high risk)
  • Nobles County (high risk) ← Upgraded to high today
  • Olmstead County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Ramsey County (substantial risk)
  • Redwood County (substantial risk)
  • Renville County (substantial risk)
  • Rice County (substantial risk)
  • Rock County (substantial risk) ← Upgraded to high today
  • Scott County (substantial risk)
  • Sherburne County (substantial risk)
  • Sibley County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Stearns County (substantial risk)
  • St. Louis County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Swift County (substantial risk)
  • Todd County (substantial risk) ← Added today
  • Traverse County (substantial risk)
  • Waseca County (substantial risk)
  • Washington County (substantial risk)
  • Wilkin County (high risk) ← Upgraded to high today
  • Winona County (substantial risk)
  • Wright County (substantial risk)
Centers for Disease Control

The State of Minnesota is now offering a $100 Visa gift card to unvaccinated individuals 12 and older who get their first COVID-19 vaccination dose through August 15th.

The Centers for Disease Control is also recommending that all K-12 students, teachers, staff and visitors wear masks inside school buildings to start the new school year, regardless of vaccination status.

The University of Minnesota has announced that everyone indoors on campus (vaccinated & unvaccinated) must wear a mask effective August 3rd.

Target has announced that all employees will be required to wear masks beginning on Tuesday, August 3rd.

CHECK IT OUT: Here's how to stop your glasses from fogging while wearing a face mask

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.