CDC director: Data suggests vaccinated people largely 'do not carry the virus'

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The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a new interview celebrated data suggesting that those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 largely "do not carry the virus."

CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow on Monday that "our data from the CDC today suggests that vaccinated people do not carry the virus" or get sick.

"It's not just in the clinical trials, but it's also in real-world data," she added.

Her comments seemed to be in reference to a CDC study released earlier on Monday that examined Moderna's and Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccines and found that in real-world conditions, they reduced the risk of infection by 90 percent two or more weeks after the second dose was administered. The CDC said the study demonstrated that the vaccines "can reduce both asymptomatic and symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections."

Though Walensky expressed optimism over this finding and said "we can kind of almost see the end" of the pandemic based on the rate of vaccinations in the United States, she also reiterating her concern about COVID-19 cases ticking up.

"What I really would hate to have happen is to have another oncoming surge just as we're reaching towards getting so many more people vaccinated," she said.

Walensky had previously expressed similar concerns on Monday about a potential fourth surge in COVID-19 cases, saying in a briefing she has a feeling "of impending doom" while urging Americans to "please hold on a little while longer."

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