VACCINE TEAM: If you’ve completed the vaccines, do you know if we’re protected against the variants of COVID-19?

VACCINE TEAM: If you’ve completed the vaccines, do you know if we’re protected against the variants of COVID-19?

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A viewer reached out to the Vaccine Team concerned about the new variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. They wanted to know how well current vaccines protect against mutations.

“If you’ve completed the vaccines, do you know if we’re protected against the variants of COVID-19?”

This is the question scientists around the world are working on around the clock.

In the United States, the most common mutation of the original virus that causes COVID-19 is known as the UK variant or B 1117.

WBTV’s On Your Side Health Reporter Kristi O’Connor spoke with the Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner and current Duke University Physician Dr. Mark McClellan.

“The three approved vaccines are effective in preventing mild and severe cases caused by B1117,” Dr. McCLellan said.

While vaccine developers work on a possible “booster” shot to fight mutations, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working to keep track of any variants.

Routine analysis of genetic sequence data enables CDC and its public health partners to identify and characterize variant viruses—either new ones identified here or those already identified abroad—and to investigate how variants impact COVID-19 disease severity and how variants impact the effectiveness of vaccines and therapeutics.
CDC

In his interview with WBTV, Dr. McClellan echoed what scientists keep telling us. The more people vaccinated for COVID-19, the fewer opportunities there are for mutations.

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