Understanding the New Delta Variant of COVID 19
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Just as most of the United States has gotten comfortable with reopening and beginning our new normal, this new variant seems to be threatening to take that all away. The new Delta variant of COVID, also referred to as B.1.617.2, is catching scientist’s attention and sounding an alarm across the country.
Initially discovered in India, this new variant now accounts for at least 25% of all new cases and will like soon be the most dominant strain in the US. Accounting for only 1% just over a month ago, this swift growth in numbers may be a cause for concern and has moved the CDC to label it a ‘variant of concern’.
While the Indian Delta Variant is newer to the United States, it has currently been found in at least 80 countries and makes up over 90% of new cases in the UK. This new variant is proving to be much more transmissible than variants we’ve seen in the past. Additionally, the variant continues to mutate and may cause more severe symptoms in some.
Are Vaccines Effective Against the New Delta COVID Variant?
While 45% of the US population is fully vaccinated, scientists are not sure exactly how the vaccines will protect against the Delta variant. Early studies are showing that the Pfizer and Astrazeneca vaccines should be effective against hospitalization due to COVID. This should also be true for the Moderna vaccine. However, this is only true after two weeks after you have received your second dose of the vaccine.
Do I Still Need to Wear My Face Mask?
The quick growth of the Delta variant may be attributed to things opening back up and people gathering in groups without masks. If this is the case, there is an important lesson to be learned here: keep your mask on. Along with getting vaccinated, the CDC is still strongly suggesting that individuals continue to wear a face mask to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
Although most of the US has re-opened and many cities are lifting their mask ordinance for fully vaccinated individuals, it may not be time to let our guard down. With more vulnerable populations seeing increased risk of complications from the Indian Delta variant, continuing to wear masks around others is as important as ever.
To achieve the ultimate level of protection, we highly recommend opting for an FDA Approved White List KN95 face mask or N95 face mask to protect you and those you may come in contact with from the virus.
The Bottom Line
While most evidence points to the vaccines being effective against Delta and other new variants of COVID, there is still a chance a vaccinated individual can contract the virus and transmit it to others. The best thing both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals can do to prevent yourself and those around you from getting sick is by continuing to wear your face masks, especially when in contact with vulnerable populations like the elderly or immunocompromised.
Source Ortho continues to be the most trusted source for all Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). We offer a wide variety of face masks including KN95, N95 and 3 Ply masks, along with gloves sanitizing supplies and thermometers.