Questions about the COVID-19 Delta variant? Health expert has answers

FOX 5 sought out Dr. Amesh Adalja, senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for Health Security to answer common questions about the delta variant of COVID-19.

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Should vaccinated people be concerned? 

Dr. Adalja said we are seeing the delta variant spread almost exclusively among the unvaccinated. He said vaccines have offered tremendous protection even against the highly contagious variant and breakthrough infections, although possible, are rare and almost always mild.

"If you're fully vaccinated there's not any evidence that the delta variant poses a major threat to you. What we've seen is the delta variant moving through unvaccinated populations. We're not seeing people hospitalized that have been fully vaccinated at any high rate. So I don't think we have to change our behavior. The only behavior that I would recommend is telling your friends family members, neighbors who have not been vaccinated to get vaccinated."

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When should masks be worn?

Dr. Adalja says he still agrees with the CDC guidance that states fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks. Some other experts have said it’s prudent to wear a mask inside when you don’t know the vaccination status of others around, even if you’re vaccinated.

But what about the headlines on vaccinated people getting infected?:

"When you get a breakthrough infection they're very very rare. It's even rarer that they are actually significant meaning that you get symptoms and it's rarer still that you would be so ill that you need to be hospitalized," Dr. Adalja said.