As people in the US grapple with a return to masking to stay ahead of the delta and lambda variants and their coming spawn, researchers are increasingly connecting current epidemiology to modeling predictions. The news isn't good, but we can stop what now seems inevitable – with widespread vaccination.
The Cape Cod Cluster
On Tuesday, July 27, CDC director Rochelle Walensky updated the media on new guidance recommending that everyone, including the fully vaccinated, wear masks in indoor public settings in areas of substantial and high transmission.
"The delta variant is showing every day its willingness to outsmart us and be an opportunist in areas where we've not shown a fortified defense against it. In recent days new data on outbreaks show the delta variant behaves differently than past strains. In rare occurrences, some vaccinated people are infectious after vaccination and may be contagious. This new science is worrisome and unfortunately warrants an update to the recommendations," Walensky explained. (I forgive her anthropomorphizing because she uses "data" as a plural.)
News media quickly zeroed in on Cape Cod as the site of the outbreak that prompted the change, and by Friday July 30, CDC's weekly publication the MMWR provided the details:
To continue reading, go to DNA Science, where this post first appeared.