FAUCI: CDC LOOKING AT CHANGING MASK GUIDELINES — COVID-19 cases have continued to rise in the United States and now the CDC is considering revising their mask guidance for fully vaccinated Americans.
First, let’s talk about what’s been going on here in the U.S.
When the CDC first announced fully vaccinated people didn’t need to wear masks inside, the Alpha variant was the dominant strain and COVID cases were on the decline. Now the Delta variant is the dominant strain - which we know is much more transmissible. In a two-week period, our caseload has increased 171%. In just one week, deaths from COVID have risen 19%. Now, we know that the risk of breakthrough infection goes up for vaccinated folks like myself, the more time that we spend around unvaccinated people. So that’s one reason why masking for everyone would make sense in areas where vaccination rates are low and where the Delta variant is running rampant. It would certainly slow the spread and help protect everyone, regardless of vaccination status.
So far in the U.S., breakthrough cases - when fully vaccinated people get infected - are still not that common. Having said that, I’ve been keeping an eye on the latest research. And a new study in Israel found that Pfizer’s vaccine was just 39% effective at stopping infection. Now that sounds alarming. But I want to point out that this study was small and there are questions regarding the data.
Israel’s study conflicts with a recent British study. In the British study, Pfizer’s vaccine was found to be 88% effective against symptomatic disease. As to who’s right and who’s wrong, well, time will likely tell. Especially if our infection rates continue to spike. The CDC’s job is to look at the current data, and decide what’s in the public’s best interest.
I can tell you, the one way to avoid having masks reinstated, is to get more people vaccinated. So far, only 49.1% of the US is fully vaccinated. That is just not enough to box this virus in. Just recently, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top White House medical adviser has said we’re going in the wrong direction. And when we have a variant like Delta, that can spread very easily from person to person, we could easily get in more trouble.
While I hear many people say that getting vaccinated is a personal choice, I personally believe that getting fully vaccinated is the right choice.
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