(CNN)A safer future is just a few months away, but it’s crucial that Americans keep practicing Covid-19 safety precautions and heeding health officials’ advice as the country works to vaccinate more people, one expert told CNN on Monday.

“We’re not done yet, Covid isn’t done with us. The variants are still a risk,” Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. “You don’t declare victory in the third quarter.”

Americans should continue wearing masks and avoiding indoor crowded spaces — “where the virus can spread rapidly,” according to Frieden — as officials track the variants circulating in the US and, among them, the highly contagious B.1.1.7 variant that was first detected in the UK.

Experts say that variant is now rapidly spreading across the US and, according to the CDC, will likely become the predominant variant this month. Epidemiologist Michael Osterholm warned earlier this week the variant could help fuel another dangerous surge in just several weeks’ time.

Dr. Chris Murray, director of the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) said his team’s projections show “things will slowly but steadily get better.”

“But in our worst scenario, where people stop wearing masks faster, start having gatherings faster, then you can see a surge in April,” he said.

In other words, the next several weeks are critical — and how communities act could better or worsen Covid-19 numbers.

Another state leader announces eased restrictions

Despite experts warnings about the dangers that persist, a series of states last week unveiled plans to loosen Covid-19 restrictions.

Most recently, Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon announced he will lift the statewide mask requirement and will allow bars, restaurants, theaters and gyms to resume normal operations, starting March 16.

“I ask all Wyoming citizens to continue to take personal responsibility for their actions and stay diligent as we look ahead to the warmer months and to the safe resumption of our traditional spring and summer activities,” the governor said in a statement on Monday.

A face-covering protocol will stay in place for K-12 schools, he added.

Other state leaders, including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves also announced earlier this month they were doing away with mask mandates.

Health officials including Dr. Anthony Fauci and CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky have urged Americans to continue masking up and staying Covid-19 safe even as states move to eliminate restrictions.

“Listen to the recommendations of the CDC regarding mitigation methods, wearing of masks, physical distancing, Fauci told the National League of Cities on Monday. “Listen to what their recommendations are.”

Post-vaccination guidance doesn’t go far enough, some experts say

Many of the state leaders that announced eased measures pointed to encouraging Covid-19 trends in their state and growing vaccination numbers. But while the number of Americans who have been vaccinated does grow every day, the country is still likely a few months away from having enough residents vaccinated to help suppress the spread of the virus.

So far, more than 60 million Americans have gotten at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, according to CDC data. More than 31.4 million people are now fully vaccinated, the data shows. That’s roughly 9.5% of the US population.

The CDC has just released new guidelines for fully vaccinated people, saying they can safely visit with others who have been vaccinated, as well as small groups of unvaccinated people in some cases — but safety precautions are still needed.

The guidance says fully vaccinated people can visit other vaccinated people indoors without masks or physical distancing, can visit indoors with unvaccinated people from a single household without masks or physical distancing — if the unvaccinated people are at low risk for severe disease — and can skip quarantine and testing if they’re exposed to someone who has Covid-19 but are asymptomatic, but should still monitor for symptoms for two weeks.

The CDC also noted its travel recommendations have not changed: it says people should delay travel and stay home. The guidance will continue to be updated, Walensky said on Monday.

But some experts say the guidance didn’t go far enough.

“This is one of these examples where I think the CDC is being far overly cautious in a way that defies common sense,” emergency physician Dr. Leana Wen told CNN on Monday. “It just doesn’t make sense that you can’t travel, especially if you now can get together with loved ones, I think a lot of people are eager to see their grandkids who they don’t necessarily live with.”

“I actually would go further and say that people who are fully vaccinated should be able to travel, should be encouraged to travel,” she added.

CNN’s Virginia Langmaid, Jacqueline Howard, Jen Christensen and Will Brown contributed to this report.