The World Health Organization has recommended for mask wearing to continue for the foreseeable future amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic — even for those who are vaccinated — as the more easily transmitted delta variant of the virus runs rampant worldwide.
“Vaccine alone won’t stop community transmission,” Dr. Mariangela Simao, WHO’s assistant director-general for access to medicines and health products, said in Geneva, Fox News reported , citing CNBC. “People need to continue to use masks consistently, be in ventilated spaces, hand hygiene … the physical distance, avoid crowding. This still continues to be extremely important, even if you are vaccinated, when you have a community transmission ongoing.”
The recommendation comes weeks after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said vaccinated people can go most places without masks, though federal mandates such as mask-wearing on airplanes and public transit remain in effect.
The delta variant, first discovered in India, now accounts for 90% of all new coronavirus cases in the United Kingdom and 20% in the U.S., Fox News reported.
Though it hasn’t been definitively determined whether the mutation is more virulent than other strains of the virus, health experts say the delta variant is more easily spread.