BUFFALO, N.Y. — ​A local health expert says the CDC’s new guidelines are meant to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and its variants.

Dr. John Sellik, a professor of medicine at the University of Buffalo, says even if people are vaccinated, they can still carry COVID and give it to others.

Dr. Sellik points to May, when there were very low percentages of the delta variant, compared to now, where the rate is well over 80%.

But he says Western New York is still in pretty good shape in terms of a low number of cases, low transmission and a low positive rate.

“The CDC considers 50 cases for 100,000 population to be at the point at which we’re considered to be a great risk,” he said. “We are still well below that. Our percent positivity is around 2%, so the numbers locally remain quite favorable, but we have to keep an eye on them.”

Dr. Sellik says the only way to stop the spread is to get vaccinated if you haven’t already. He says the vaccines are extraordinarily effective and safe.