“Silent Distributors”: Can You Still Spread COVID If You Are Vaccinated? Health experts focus on wearing masks

A pair of injections in the arm will offer vaccination to the coronavirus but probably won’t remove the need to wear a mask on people’s faces – at least not any time soon.

While health experts are more confident than ever in the vaccine’s ability to immunize a person against the virus that causes COVID-19, questions remain about its ability to stop a person from spreading it.

“We don’t know if the vaccination is preventing you from being a silent spreader,” Worcester medical director Dr Michael Hirsh said. “You yourself might not get sick if you were exposed after getting the vaccine, but you could still spread it. “

Hirsh, director of trauma services and chief surgeon at Children’s Medical Center at UMass Memorial Health Care in Worcester, said research continues to decipher a person’s ability to spread the virus after vaccination.

Vaccine trials have shown their effectiveness in preventing symptoms and negative effects associated with COVID. However, there is not enough information, experts say, to determine whether a person can become asymptomatic and pass the virus on to others.

Look no further than Wednesday’s inauguration in Washington DC President Joe Biden, who received both doses of the vaccine, wore a mask for most of the ceremony. Former Vice President Mike Pence, who also received the vaccine, wore a mask throughout the ceremony.

Even though the United States continues to administer the vaccine, Biden said one of his plans during the first 10 days in office included a mask warrant even if vaccinations continued across the country. The warrant would require individuals to wear masks on federal property.

To trigger an immune response, many vaccines place a weakened or inactivated germ in the body. These vaccines normally prevent infection and the spread of disease.

The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are new versions of vaccines and use messenger RNA.

Messenger RNA vaccines use genetics to produce immunity. They provide instructions to cells to produce advanced proteins like those found on the surface of the virus that causes COVID-19.

The cells then display the piece of protein on their surface and the body’s immune system recognizes that the protein does not belong. The body then begins to develop an immune response and produces antibodies.

At the end of the process, the body learns how to protect itself against future infection. A person will not show symptoms of COVID-19, but it is possible that they can still spread it.

Messenger RNA vaccines may have the ability to prevent the spread of the virus, but there is not yet enough data to determine the response.

For this reason, Hirsh, other health experts, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommend that people continue to wear masks even after receiving the vaccine.

The CDC said experts need to research the vaccines under “real world conditions” before they can provide updates to the mask wearing guidelines.

The agency also continues to recommend that people stay 6 feet from each other whenever possible and wash their hands often. The regulations also plan to avoid large crowds and poorly ventilated areas, even after receiving a vaccine.

“We don’t yet know if getting a COVID-19 vaccine will prevent you from passing the virus that causes COVID-19 to other people, even if you don’t get sick yourself,” the report said. CDC on its website.

The CDC has said it will announce any changes to mask-wearing and social distancing protocols when they become available.

As of Wednesday afternoon, more than 15 million Americans had received a coronavirus vaccine, including more than 300,000 residents of Massachusetts, according to the CDC. More than 670,000 vaccines have been delivered in the state.

Immediate results from the vaccine may not change mask requirements, but health experts believe it will help fight the high number of cases.

Still, the goal of vaccinating around 70% of the population may not happen until at least mid-summer.

“The exit ticket is definitely vaccination,” Hirsh said. “And in the meantime, I think it’s going to be a few more chaotic months.”

After several weeks of administering the vaccine in Massachusetts, new cases of the coronavirus in the state have started to level out or decline.

Following a post-holiday increase, the state has seen the weekly number of new COVID cases drop after a three-week increase. The peak for Massachusetts has so far occurred during the week of January 2 with 42,495 new cases. Last week, 30,186 new cases were registered.

COVID deaths in the state have also stabilized after 11 weeks of increases. They remain high, however, and on a weekly basis are about 50% higher than the week before Thanksgiving.

The arrival of a new variant of the virus in Massachusetts has also highlighted the need for masks.

Massachusetts officials this week confirmed the existence of a new variant as is.

Health experts remain convinced that the vaccine will be effective against new strains virus, however, it appears to be more contagious than the previous variants.

As the pandemic nears its first anniversary in the United States, don’t expect masks to go away anytime soon.

“People come in after testing positive saying ‘I don’t know how I got it’,” Hirsh said. “We think the answer is that it’s just a more transmissible type of virus right now. There isn’t much we can do to reassure people that they won’t get it. The only thing they can do is really try to stay in their bubble.

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