“The war has changed,” says a new a CDC report. New research this week proves that the COVID Delta variant, which scientists knew was more transmissible, can in fact be transmitted by even vaccinated people. And if you’re unvaccinated, it can lead to severe illness. With these double worries top of mind, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, appeared on Face the Nation with a game changing warning. “Things are going to get worse,” he also said on This Week, warning of “pain and suffering in the future,” especially is more people do not get vaccinated. Read on for six points that can save your life—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.
What’s new about the Delta variant this week is the “confirmation of how easily it spreads from person to person,” said Dr. Fauci, “but also we found that individuals who get breakthrough infections, namely people who were vaccinated, who might get infected, almost invariably, they get either minimal symptoms or no symptoms at all, but since no vaccine is a hundred percent effective, you’re going to see breakthrough infections. But what we’ve learned, that’s new, is that when you look at the level of virus in the nasopharynx of people who are vaccinated, who get breakthrough infections, it’s really quite high and equivalent to the level of virus in the nasopharynx of unvaccinated. That’s very different from the Alpha variant—the Alpha variant, the level of ours in a vaccinated person was extremely low in the vaccinated people compared to the unvaccinated people. Not so with Delta. So we know now that vaccinated people who get breakthrough infections can spread the virus to other people.”
“The phenomenon of the ability to spread is clear. We’re seeing that very, very clearly in a number of situations. When you look at the data that we’ve gotten from a single study so far, and other studies are coming out, you have a variability, but the sort of average or mean level of virus in the nasopharynx, is it really quite similar, almost identical on an average. So you would think, obviously when you have biological variability, you’re going to have some people high, some people low, some people in the middle, but the median or mean is going to be right there, which is very similar to the unvaccinated individual, which is troublesome, which tells you the potential for transmission is there.” All the areas in red here have high areas of transmission.
Why do even vaccinated people now need to wear a mask in areas of substantial or high COVID cases? “The situation is that if you get breakthrough infections in individuals who are vaccinated and they don’t spread it all to anybody else, then you would not worry about if they went home to a vulnerable person in the household, children, an elderly person, there wouldn’t be any issue. But since we know now that they can transmit when they get breakthrough infections, even though they have minimal symptoms or no symptoms, we know they can do it. We know the mechanistic reason for it is that the level of virus is high. So you want to make sure they don’t get infected. And that’s the reason why, and the fundamental basis for the CDC modifying their guidelines and saying, now, if you’re an area of a high or substantial level of virus, namely, a red or an orange zone, you, when you are in an indoor public setting, you need to wear a mask. That’s the fundamental reason for that.”
“The issue that just looms large, when you’re dealing with this, is that you understand people’s feeling that they have the individual right to make their own decision. And I respect that for sure. But the issue is, if you’re going to be part of the transmission chain to someone else, then your decision is impacting someone else. It’s not only impacting you. And you’ve got to think about it, that you are a member of society and you have a responsibility.”
“We have a hundred million people in this country who are eligible to be vaccinated, who are not vaccinated,” said Fauci. “We’ve really got to get those people to change their minds, make it easy for them, convince them, do something to get them to be vaccinated, because they are the ones that are propagating this outbreak. That hasn’t changed. What has magnified the problem, is that we’re now dealing with a virus that has an extraordinary capability of spreading from person to person. So when you superimpose one on the other, you have a very difficult situation, a pool of unvaccinated people and a virus that spreads very efficiently.”
“If you are vaccinated and you get a breakthrough first of all, you’re much, much more protected against getting infected than an unvaccinated person, who is completely vulnerable. So you have a degree of protection against infection, but the critical issue is that if you do get infected, the likelihood of you getting a severe outcome of the infection is very low. It is much more likely that you will be either without symptoms or minimally symptomatic. So the vaccine is doing what you want it to do. It’s protecting people from getting sick.So get vaccinated ASAP, 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.