The complacency of unvaccinated Alaskans toward the current coronavirus presently circulating in Alaska may soon be shattered by the arrival of the more transmissible delta mutation that has been ravaging India and has recently spread to the United States. One in five U.S. tests has been positive for this recent arrival. Other countries to which the delta variant has spread have reimposed lockdowns. My peer group and I have all been fully vaccinated and now comfortably mingle freely. We know that we are now much less likely to contract an acute COVID-19 infection and its “long haul” health problems.
However, I myself will continue to wear an effective mask when around people whose vaccination status is unknown to avoid any possible exposure to the new virus from an asymptomatic carrier. My vaccination has given me 95% effective protection, but my mask will reduce the remaining 5% risk to nearly zero. My background as a practicing physician has helped me make these decisions. The unvaccinated may be wise to follow my example.
— David P. Werner, M.D., retired
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