There’s a quick and easy way to stop coronavirus variants from popping up — higher vaccination rates.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” over the weekend that higher vaccination rates can stop the coronavirus from spreading, limiting the number of variants that arise.
- “Our goal right now is to stay ahead of the virus. We want to boost now so we don’t end up in a vulnerable place,” Walensky said, according to CNN.
- “We will see if we can get the amount of transmission down in this country, and truly around the world, which we are also working to do, and then we are anticipating and hoping we will not have more mutations that will require more boosting in the future.”
Indeed, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration approved boosters shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for older adults, those with underlying conditions and more. Those booster shots Walensky talked about are on their way.
But the coronavirus might be becoming more transmissible, specifically through the air. A new study from the University of Maryland — which was published in the medical journal Clinical Infectious Diseases — found that people infected with the most recent coronavirus strains were passing more viral particles into the air compared to previous strains.
- COVID-19 “is evolving to become more airborne,” the study said.
Dr. Don Milton, professor of environmental health at UMD’s School of Public Health, said that the study shows the delta variant is becoming more transmissible without question, as I wrote for the Deseret News.
- “Our latest study provides further evidence of the importance of airborne transmission,” Milton said in a statement. “We know that the delta variant circulating now is even more contagious than the alpha variant.”