'I'm vaccinated and still masking, the Delta variant is no joke' Doctor advises to stay alert amid rising COVID-19 cases

Dr Jen Gunter explains why she is still taking steps to stay safe from the Delta variant and why you should too...

woman wearing face mask in the street
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A doctor has issued a stark warning over the Delta variant amid rising COVID-19 cases—as she gives her reasoning for not ditching face masks just yet.

Despite being fully vaccinated Dr. Jen Gunter has taken to social media to explain the importance of not letting our guard down just yet when it comes to the virus.

Her post reads, "I am vaccinated and still masking. The Delta variant is no joke and while vaccines are VERY protective, they are even better when combined with a mask. It’s like seat belts and airbags, better together. Or peanut butter and chocolate! The reproductive number (R0) for the Delta variant is simply resulting in too many infections for me to give up my mask."

More from woman&home:
COVID vaccines and pregnancy, fertility and periods—sorting myths from side effects
Best reusable face masks—stylish coverings that won't ruin your outfit
How to wear a face mask properly to protect your loved ones

Rising graph showing increase in covid cases

(Image credit: Francesco Carta fotografo)

For anyone wondering what the science for concern is over the Delta variant spreading, Dr. Gunter highlights that the "original COVID-19 strain had an R0 of about 2.5", meaning one person with a typical infection would infect 2-3 people. "The Alpha variant was reported as being 60% more transmissible" and the third variant, the "Delta, is approximately 60% more transmissible than that", with an R0 of almost seven.

She explained, "To get herd immunity with an R0 of 6 or 7 means 85% of the population must be immune. For perspective, the Delta variant is as infectious as smallpox. I won’t be taking my mask off for a while."

Dr. Gunter wants people to think twice about removing their masks in the hope that the vaccine alone will save them.

While Dr. Gunter acknowledges that vaccination is "highly protective" against severe disease, she puts her message across clearly by admitting, "I am a seat belt AND air bag kind of gal. Safety first."

Before blasting that anti-vaxxers are "pro-death and despair" while clearing up some misconceptions.

She concluded, "I would be devastated if I caught COVID and gave it to one person, never mind 6 or 7. And if you come here JAQing off (the anti-vaccine “Just Asking Questions”) or with what-aboutism I am just going to restrict your ass, so have fun pissing in the wind. Being anti-vaccine means you are pro-death and despair. Masks work. Vaccines work and they don’t cause infertility or miscarriages. And if your research tells you otherwise, you are reading sources that mean you harm. Ref: Lifting of COVID-19 restrictions in the UK and the Delta variant, Lancet Resp. Med July 12, 2021."

Selina Maycock

Selina is a Senior Entertainment Writer with more than 15 years of experience in newspapers and magazines. She has covered all things Entertainment for GoodtoKnow, Woman&Home and My Imperfect Life. Before joining Future Publishing, Selina graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2006 with a degree in Journalism. She is fully NCTJ and NCE qualified and has 100wpm shorthand.