If America’s current COVID-19 surge continues unabated into the fall and winter, the country will likely face an even more deadly strain of the virus that could evade the current coronavirus vaccines, NIAID director Anthony Fauci told McClatchy [August 4].
Why it matters: Fauci’s comments underscore the importance of acting quickly to vaccinate the tens of millions of Americans who have not been inoculated against the virus.
The current surge in coronavirus cases nationwide is being driven by the Delta variant, which is already more contagious than the original strain of the virus.
The big picture: As the virus continues to spread due to insufficient vaccination rates, it is being given “ample” time to mutate into a more dangerous new variant in the fall and winter, Fauci said.
Other variants are already cropping up.
On [August 3] South Korea announced that it had detected two cases of the Delta Plus variant, one in a man who had recently returned from the U.S., Reuters reports. Some experts believe the Delta Plus variant could be more contagious than the Delta variant.