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What is the risk indoors if you are fully vaccinated?

2021-08-29T22:36:56.897Z

What is the risk of eating indoors if you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19? This is what a health expert says.



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(CNN) -

With covid-19 infections at their highest levels since January and hospitalizations at a level not seen since winter arrives, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) , for its acronym in English) recommend the use of masks indoors even for vaccinated people. While new studies show that covid-19 vaccines continue to provide excellent protection against serious diseases, the data suggests that there may be less protection against the delta variant.

There are many people who are fully vaccinated and want to be responsible members of the community and wonder what they can and should continue to do.

Can they meet up with friends?

Dining inside a restaurant?

Do exercise in the gym?

Can vaccinated grandparents reunite with their unvaccinated grandchildren?

  • An unvaccinated teacher without a mask infected more than half of her students with covid-19, according to the CDC

For answers to these questions, we turned to CNN Medical Analyst Dr. Leana Wen.

Wen is an emergency room physician and visiting professor of health policy and management at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University.

She is also the author of a new book, "Lifelines: A Doctor's Journey in the Fight for Public Health."

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CNN: What should people think about the increase in infections and the new research?

Dr. Leana Wen:

In terms of processing where we are now, I think people should have two things in mind.

First, most areas of the United States have substantial or high COVID-19 transmission, as defined by the CDC.

We have to think of the vaccine as a very good raincoat.

If it is drizzling outside and the level of infection is not very high, the vaccines will protect very well.

But if it is a constant storm, then there is a greater chance of getting wet.

A vaccinated person is at higher risk when surrounded by many people who could be infected with COVID-19, and that is what happened across the United States at this time.

Second, we are entering a phase of the pandemic in which almost all activities will have some level of risk.

Individuals must decide for themselves what risk they are comfortable with considering the medical circumstances of their home and the value of the activity to them.

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If everyone in your household is fully vaccinated and generally healthy, you may be willing to take more risks.

You could conclude that even if a COVID-19 infection was likely to occur after being vaccinated, this would be a mild case and you would agree to take that risk to continue your pre-pandemic activities.

Someone else might decide that because they live at home with younger unvaccinated children or immunosuppressed family members, they want to be more cautious.

I think both options are equally reasonable.

The vast majority of the spread of covid-19 is due to people who are not vaccinated.

Vaccinated people are not a threat to public health and should be able to exercise their own judgment about what activities are safe enough for them.

CNN: Let's review the risk of specific activities.

What is the risk of dining inside a restaurant?

Wen:

Eating indoors is definitely riskier than dining outdoors.

What is that risk?

It depends on several factors.

To begin with, what is the configuration of the space in the restaurant?

A crowded and poorly ventilated place will have a higher risk than a place where there could be more space between diners.

Also, who are you having dinner with?

If all members of your group are known to be fully vaccinated, and these are the only people who will be around you, that is a safer scenario than if members of your own group were not vaccinated.

It would also analyze the virus transmission rate in your community.

The lower the rate, the potentially safer it is.

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CNN: How about going to the gym?

Wen:

Again, that depends on the circumstances.

If you are using the elliptical or weight machine and no one is near you, then it is quite safe.

If you are taking fitness classes outside, the risk is also low.

But if you go, for example, to a high intensity exercise class in which many people are breathing with difficulty, close to each other, and you do not know if they are vaccinated, the risk is substantially higher.

CNN: Would you travel?

Wen:

The risk of air travel is quite low and can be further reduced if you use a high-quality mask like an N95 or KN95.

The biggest concern is what happens once you arrive at your destination, as I mentioned in this CNN Q&A.

CNN: How about a private meeting with friends where everyone is vaccinated?

Would it be okay to continue with dinners and other indoor gatherings?

Wen:

Without a doubt, the risk will be much lower than if the same people were together, but were not vaccinated.

A CDC study this week found that those who are not vaccinated are five times more likely to contract COVID-19 than those who are vaccinated (and 29 times more likely to be hospitalized or die from coronavirus).

Many vaccinated people would be comfortable with the level of risk in this situation.

Again, it is not zero, but it is quite low.

This is particularly true if the other people in the gathering have a similar level of risk tolerance and do not participate in high-risk activities, for example, if they always wear masks when in public indoor spaces and if they avoid higher-risk ligaments. like crowded bars and restaurants.

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CNN: Last fall and winter, people formed 'pandemic groups'.

Would you recommend doing this again?

Wen:

For some people, yes, it would.

There are many people who really want to minimize the chance of getting COVID after getting vaccinated.

That includes people who have underlying medical conditions, where a post-vaccination infection that is mild to someone else could land them in the hospital.

Others may be quite healthy, but do not want to be asymptomatic carriers who could pass COVID-19 to their vulnerable family members.

People in similar situations, who have a similar approach when it comes to caution in their lives, could decide to form a pandemic herd with each other.

They might decide to only socialize with people in the same group indoors.

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My family has done this with another family that has unvaccinated young children.

That makes babysitting, carpooling, and play dates easier.

I would advise others to consider the level of caution in other homes and to also exercise caution before meeting them indoors.

When in doubt, meet only outdoors.

CNN: Can vaccinated grandparents continue to reunite with their unvaccinated grandchildren?

Wen:

Yes. I would advise grandparents who are concerned about passing COVID-19 to their unvaccinated grandchildren that they can choose to reduce their own risk in the three to five days before seeing their grandchildren.

They could refrain from indoor meetings with other people during this period, and if they want to be more confident, I suggest they get tested just before seeing their grandchildren.

My advice is the same the other way around, for grandchildren, if grandparents are particularly vulnerable.

Grandchildren can always make sure to wear masks indoors around others in the three to five days before meeting and then get tested before the meeting.

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If all of this is too much, consider meeting yourself outdoors.

The exterior is still much safer than the interior.

And of course, if there are people 12 and older who are not yet vaccinated, they should do so as soon as possible to protect them and the people around them.

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Source: cnnespanol

All news articles on 2021-08-29

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