“High viral loads suggest an increased risk of transmission and raised concern that, unlike with other variants, vaccinated people infected with Delta can transmit the virus,” said CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement Friday.

The finding “was a pivotal discovery leading to CDC’s updated mask recommendation,” Walensky said.

Walensky defended the agency’s guidance on wearing masks in schools Friday evening, telling Fox News it was necessary to protect kids, their families and communities.

“Right now the best way to (prevent outbreaks in schools) is to have everybody masked because we do have disease in the community,” she said. “And hopefully as we have vaccinations for kids, and less disease in the community, we’ll be able to scale back on the mask wearing.”

Also emerging late this week: The Delta variant appears to cause more severe illness and spread as easily as chickenpox, according to an internal document from the…

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