17 Aug 2021

Why vaccinated must lock down too - Delta's speedy transmission

10:07 pm on 17 August 2021

People who are fully or partially vaccinated in New Zealand will still need to follow Level 4 rules after a new community case was discovered.

People in Queen Street Auckland, wearing masks.

Photo: RNZ / Liu Chen

At the moment, scientists are still trying to determine just how much more transmissible Delta is, but preliminary guidance indicates it could be as much as 90 percent more infectious.

Just today, it was revealed that the Delta variant of Covid-19 was transmitted when doors were simultaneously open for just seconds at a quarantine facility.

Globally, both the World Health Organisation and US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have changed their guidance on masking as Delta has spread.

The CDC has also advised that Delta can spread among the vaccinated.

The World Health Organisation recommended at a 25 June press conference that fully vaccinated people continue to wear masks and practice other safety measures.

" People need to continue to use masks consistently, be in ventilated spaces, hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, the physical distance, avoid crowding, WHO official Dr. Mariangela Simao told reporters.

"What we're saying is once you've been fully vaccinated continue to play it safe because you could end up as part of a transmission chain," Dr. Bruce Aylward said at that press conference. "You may not actually be fully protected."

The CDC updated their guidelines 27 July recommending that even fully vaccinated people should wear a mask in most public indoor settings.

"Preliminary evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people who do become infected with the Delta variant can spread the virus to others," the CDC noted in that advice.

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