The coronavirus pandemic won’t quit, as a new variant, dubbed Delta, proves more transmissible, and thus more dangerous. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is worried. He appeared on CBSN yesterday to alert viewers to a big problem ahead, and said what you can do to stay safe. Read on for his 5 most essential pieces of advice—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You Have “Long” COVID and May Not Even Know It.
Dr. Fauci was asked about “the widening gap here between vaccinated and unvaccinated America. What are your thoughts on that in relation to the Delta variant?” “I’m quite concerned,” he said, “because first of all, the Delta variant has the capability of spreading much more efficiently from person to person. It also can cause more severe disease. So there are two things about it that are troublesome.”
Dr. Fauci said the Delta variant will “become much more dominant, particularly in those regions of the country, those states and cities and counties that are under vaccinated.” States like Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana have lower-than-average vaccination rates. “The under vaccinated components of the country are going to be at significant risk. Whereas those that are highly vaccinated would have a much, much diminished risk of getting infected.”
“The good news about this is that the vaccines that are used in this country do very well against the Delta variant,” said Dr. Fauci. “For example, some of the ones that have used the mRNA vaccines”—like Pfizer and Moderna—”are about 88% protective against symptomatic disease, and well over 90% protective against severe disease that might require hospitalization. The problem is that the people who are unvaccinated or at significant risk of a virus that spreads so efficiently, which is the reason why we are out there asking people, almost pleading with them: If you’re not vaccinated, please get vaccinated because we have a highly effective countermeasure against this Delta variant.”
Last week, the World Health Organization said you should wear masks after vaccinations. Dr. Fauci and the CDC have said otherwise. “First of all, I think it’s important for people to understand that the WHO is responsible for recommendations that involve the entire planet,” he said. “And as a planet, the planet is under-vaccinated. Only about 10% of the world are vaccinated. We are a well-vaccinated country for the most part, notwithstanding those pockets of low vaccination that I mentioned. So when WHO says you should wear a mask outdoors and indoors, even if you’re vaccinated, that’s because there’s so much viral dynamics going on in the world. Some places having been less than 10% vaccinated. And so the vaccinated people are really in an environment of a higher degree of virus, which increases the risk because no vaccine is 100% effective. And the more vaccine, the more virus that’s around you surrounding you and your environment, the greater risk you have of getting infected, whether or not you were vaccinated or not….Having said that the CDC continuously monitors the situation, and I’m sure it would remain flexible that if any changes are warranted based on the evolving situation, they would then make a change in their recommendation. But right now it doesn’t look that way. It looks like then it continue to stay by the original recommendation.”
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Follow Fauci’s fundamentals and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live—get vaccinated ASAP, wear a face mask that fits snugly and is double layered, if you aren’t vaccinated; don’t travel, social distance, avoid large crowds, don’t go indoors with people you’re not sheltering with (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don’t visit any of these 35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.