COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) – A leaked report from the CDC in the form of a slideshow contains data about the Delta variant that health experts say is concerning.
CDC data shows that vaccinated individuals can still contract the Delta variant and spread the virus to others, even if the vaccinated individual is asymptomatic.
“They can still acquire it and even if they don’t develop symptoms or illness because they’re protected by their vaccine, the risk is that they have the virus in their body and they’re able to spread it out to those around them,” said DHEC Medical Consultant, Dr. Jonathan Knoche.
Data suggests that unvaccinated individuals may also contract more severe disease. Children under 12 years of age are considered an at-risk group because they are not yet able to get vaccinated.
Physicians are concerned about the variant because the data shows it is more contagious. One person with a previous strain of COVID, such as the Alpha variant, could infect an average of one to three people. Doctors say that’s the same rate of infection as the common cold.
One person with the Delta variant, however, can infect eight or nine people, on average. That’s the same infection rate as chicken pox.
Doctors say the best way to avoid severe infection, hospitalization, and death is to get vaccinated. Infectious Disease Expert at Prisma Health, Dr. Helmut Albrecht, says only unvaccinated individuals are showing severe disease in his clinic. He says the best way to prevent severe disease is to get vaccinated.
“We want your immune system, when you encounter the real virus we want that to be trained, and we want to train it safely, and the training is called vaccinating,” said Albrecht.
The CDC’s preliminary data explains why the department updated mask recommendations stating that everyone should wear a mask indoors in public situations, regardless of vaccination status.
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