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Americans are being more careful to avoid catching and spreading the coronavirus but are still not being careful enough to slow the pandemic, especially with worrisome, apparently more contagious new variants looming.

That's the conclusion of the latest findings, released Friday, from the largest national survey tracking behavior during the coronavirus pandemic.

It may seem counterintuitive, but health officials say that even after you get vaccinated against COVID-19, you still need to practice the usual pandemic precautions, at least for a while. That means steering clear of crowds, continuing to wear a good mask in public, maintaining 6 feet or more of distance from people outside your household and frequently washing your hands. We talked to infectious disease specialists to get a better understanding of why.

Why do I have to continue with precautions after I've been vaccinated?

It was Memorial Day when then-candidate Joe Biden made his first public appearance since the coronavirus shut down in-person campaigning. Before he went out to place a wreath at a veterans memorial in Delaware, Biden and his team decided he would wear a mask. It wasn't a difficult decision, an aide said when asked about the choice.

It has become the battle cry of public health officials around the world: "Wear a mask to slow the spread." Friday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new evidence supporting this advice.

Researchers analyzed coronavirus infection rates in Kansas following a statewide mask mandate. They found that counties that chose to enforce the mandate saw their cases decrease. Counties that chose to opt out saw their cases continue to rise.

usatoday.com

An Ohio State University Medical Center survey shows the majority of Americans plan to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines during the holidays.

dailymail.co.uk

The woman escorted from a middle school football game for not wearing a mask has rejected a plea deal to charges of resisting arrest and criminal trespassing. 

Universal mask wearing in public could greatly reduce the number of Americans who die by COVID-19 by February, a study published Friday in the journal Nature Medicine projects.

Researchers at the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation made estimates based on some assumptions under different scenarios.

Ohio Department of Health

Ohio Thursday reported a new record number of COVID-19 cases, with 2,425 in the past 24-hours - surpassing the previous record set Wednesday.  

businessinsider.com

The White House says President Trump will stop in Dayton on Monday for a campaign event. 

Marian Jacques

More than two dozen parents, mostly in Northwest Ohio, are suing the state over the mandate that K-12 students wear masks.

Updated at 6:08 p.m. ET

Joe Biden is calling for everyone in the United States to wear a mask, well into the fall.

"Every single American should be wearing a mask when they're outside for the next three months, at a minimum," Biden said Thursday afternoon in remarks in Wilmington, Del. "Every governor should mandate mandatory mask-wearing. The estimates by the experts are it will save over 40,000 lives."

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine plans to issue an order that K-12 students returning to school must wear a mask.

Updated at 6:45 p.m. ET

Twitter put a 12-hour restriction on Donald Trump Jr.'s account, saying the president's son put out a tweet that contained "misleading and potentially harmful" information about the coronavirus.

The news emerged after a person close to Trump Jr. — Republican political strategist Andrew Surabian — posted a screenshot showing what appeared to be a message to Trump Jr. alerting him of a temporary limit on his account based on the company's policy on spreading misinformation on COVID-19.

Ohio State University says part of the campus reopening plan will require students, faculty and staff to complete a ten-minute online training course and sign a pledge understanding and committing to the behaviors in the training. 

The American conversation around masks and COVID-19 has taken a dizzying turn. For months, wearing masks has been politicized as a sign of liberal leanings. But in recent days, ever more governors — many of them Republican — have moved to mandate masks. This week President Trump — arguably the nation's most visible mask un-enthusiast — started referring to wearing them as "patriotic."

As the Ohio Department of Health reported the second highest single-day total of COVID-19 cases, Governor Mike DeWine ordered mandatory face masks for the entire state beginning Thursday at 6pm.  

President Trump took to the White House briefing room on Tuesday to praise his administration's response to the virus that has killed more than 140,000 Americans so far. In a reversal of his recent statements and tone, he acknowledged the severity of the pandemic and urged Americans to comply with preventative measures.

"It will likely unfortunately get worse before it gets better," Trump said in uncharacteristically somber remarks, encouraging Americans to social distance, practice good hygiene and wear masks.

granville.oh.us

The Village of Granville is following the lead of other Ohio communities in requiring people to wear a face mask in public spaces. 

Ohio Public Radio

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s Wednesday evening speech seemed to be a warning to Ohioans to wear masks or risk another round of shutdowns and closures.

Data released today by the Ohio Department of Health places 19 of Ohio's 88 counties -- including the most populous - under a level three public health advisory, triggering a public health order requiring masks worn indoors and when social distancing is not possible.  

wcpo.com

Cincinnati-based Kroger is joining Walmart in requiring customers to wear face masks or coverings in all of it's stores. 

newalbanyohio.org

New Albany City Council voted Tuesday to amend the city’s emergency declaration to include mandatory face coverings for customers and employees at all businesses. 

Franklin County Public Health has issued a mandatory mask order should the county drop below the state's Level 3 public health emergency. 

Karen Kasler

The state reported just under 1500 confirmed new coronavirus cases Friday, as mask mandates go into effect in 12 counties at 6pm.

Ohio Department of Health

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has resisted calls to make masks mandatory in Ohio, but with the dramatic rise in cases of COVID-19 in recent weeks he has partially relented. 

businessinsider.com

State health officials Monday reported more than 800 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total of confirmed and probable  cases to just under 58-thousand.  

MARIAN JACQUES

Dublin City Manager Dana McDaniel has issued an executive order mandating the wearing of face coverings starting today. 

MARIAN JACQUES

Many Ohio cities are starting to require people to wear masks or face coverings in public spaces.

Columbus Mayor Andy Ginther plans to sign an executive order this afternoon requiring the wearing of facial coverings in public to slow the spread of COVID-19. The order will take effect tomorrow and covers employees and customers in retail establishments, restaurants, hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, tattoo parlors, day care facilities and day camps, and public transit. 

Karen Kasler

Gov. Mike DeWine changed his initial mask mandate as a condition of businesses reopening, instead requiring masks for employees but not for customers. But while mask wearing has become something of a partisan symbol, DeWine said it shouldn’t be.