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Local doctor explains why we’re being advised to wear masks again

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 7:02 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - By now, you’ve probably heard that the CDC is recommending masking for everyone, regardless of vaccine status, and that’s causing some confusion for those who are still on the fence about getting the vaccine.

Doctors said they understand why there is some confusion about why we’re all being encouraged to wear a mask again, especially if you’re fully vaccinated.

But one local doctor said the biggest misunderstanding is that people don’t know how viruses work, which is why we’re still in this pandemic with no end in sight.

“A virus works to win. It works to win, so once it sees that we’re taking measures to have it to die out, it’s going to come back stronger, and that’s essentially what has happened,” said Co-Owner & Principal Consulting Pharmacists for MedsPLUS Consulting, Dr. Jennifer Campbell.

She said we’re still in this pandemic because vaccination rates aren’t where health leaders hoped they would be by now. And because of this, we now have a variant that is spreading more rapidly, creating a need for facial coverings, vaccinated or not.

“Especially in areas with low vaccination rates. We know that the Delta variant is highly transmissible, so this will add an extra layer of protection not only for themselves, but to their loved ones, people they come around that are unvaccinated, especially our younger children,” Dr. Campbell said.

Experts said those who are fully vaccinated against covid have less chance of being hospitalized or becoming seriously ill.

But there is some risk of unknowingly spreading it to others.

“We know what works: wearing the masks. It helps to decrease transmission, social distancing, hand washing. So, going back to what’s tried and true, what we know that works in the midst of continuing to increase those vaccination numbers, [until] our children can start to get vaccinated. That’s going to be sometime probably in 2022, and until that time, we do not want to go back to what we know COVID can do to a population,” Dr. Campbell said.

Some are concerned that the CDC’s mask recommendation will keep vaccination rates low. Some wondering why get the shot if you have to wear a mask anyway. But experts maintain that the only way out of this pandemic is for everyone who can get the vaccine to roll up their sleeves.

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