What Next

The *New* New Phase of the Pandemic

With fresh guidelines from the CDC, the majority of Americans can now go mask free. Is it ok to stop worrying?


Episode Notes

The Biden administration’s new pandemic rules and countermeasures intend to bring us into a “new phase of the pandemic.” The CDC also released new guidelines for masking, and now about 70% of Americans can go mask free. What do these new guidelines actually say about what stage of the pandemic we’re in?

Guest: Megan Ranney, emergency room doctor at Brown Emergency Medicine.

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Podcast production by Mary Wilson, Danielle Hewitt, Elena Schwartz, and Carmel Delshad.


About the Show

The problem with the news right now? It’s everywhere. And each day, it can feel like we’re all just mindlessly scrolling. It’s why we created What Next. This short daily show is here to help you make sense of things. When the news feels overwhelming, we’re here to help you answer: What next? Look for new episodes every weekday morning.

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  • Mary Harris is the host and managing editor of What Next, Slate's new daily news podcast. She has reported throughout the public radio system, for NPR, Marketplace, and WNYC.