Epidemiologist Responds to Revolutionary COVID-19 Cluster in Provincetown – CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) – “It’s surprising, you know? Tufts Medical Center epidemiologist Shira Doron said. “This is not what we saw.”
She was referring to an outbreak of COVID-19 among fully vaccinated people after the July 4 vacation in Provincetown. The number of infections among fully vaccinated individuals is in the order of two dozen and increasing.
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“The delta variant is very contagious,” explained Dr. Doron. “We don’t know yet whether or not this is due to the delta variant, but statistically, there is a good chance that it is.”
In Massachusetts, there have been groundbreaking cases of COVID-19 in about 0.1% of the vaccinated population. In Provincetown, entire homes of visitors to the fourth have tested positive, despite having been fully vaccinated.
“I would never advise people to panic, but I think it’s something we should look into. I don’t want to sweep it under the rug. I think this will be something we will learn from, ”said Dr Doron.
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Although our existing vaccines prevent the majority of COVID-19 infections, there is still the possibility of getting infected. Still, the vaccine will likely prevent serious infections, hospitalizations and deaths, experts say. So far, in the Provincetown cluster, most of those infected have reported mild symptoms.
“There has always been a risk that a vaccinated person in an overcrowded situation, especially with a highly transmissible variant in circulation, could become infected,” Dr Doron said. “So if you are risk averse and you really don’t want to get COVID-19, you don’t even want to have a mild case of COVID-19, you really don’t want to take that very little risk… So you shouldn’t go to crowded places without a mask, ”she explained.
Doron says she will keep a close eye on the Provincetown cluster and seek more information as more and more people continue to get tested. Still, she and others say getting the COVID-19 vaccine is our best available method of protection. “By getting the vaccine, you have fulfilled your greater public health responsibility and you are allowed to go to crowded bars and nightclubs without a mask,” she said. “It is now a personal choice.”
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Provincetown will offer free COVID-19 testing Wednesday through Monday at the Veterans Memorial Community Center on Mayflower Street.