NIH Director Fr. Francis Collins testify before a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee looking into the budget estimates for National Institute of Health (NIH) and the state of medical research on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 26, 2021.
NIH Director Fr. Francis Collins.Sarah Silbiger/Pool via Reuters
  • National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins said holiday travel for unvaccinated people is not advised.
  • Collins told CBS's "Face the Nation" that the omicron variant puts unvaccinated people in a "vulnerable place."
  • On Friday, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he'd be comfortable flying because he's vaccinated, boosted and would wear a mask.

National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins said holiday travel for people who aren't vaccinated for COVID-19 is not advised due to the quickly spreading Omicron variant.

Dr. Collins, who spoke with CBS's "Face the Nation" Sunday morning, said those traveling this winter "should do so very carefully."

"If you're not vaccinated, I would say travel is really not a great idea because you are in a very vulnerable place now with Omicron," Collins said.

The NIH director advised travelers who are vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19 to also take  precautions, reminding people to wear their masks and "avoid those large indoor gatherings with a lot of people where sometimes caution gets thrown to the winds."

On Friday, Dr. Anthony Fauci said people who've received COVID-19 vaccinations "can still enjoy a social gathering" for the holidays, Insider reported.

"If you are vaccinated, your family is vaccinated, you have friends who are vaccinated and hopefully also boosted, you can still enjoy a social gathering, generally in a home," Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the Chief Medical Advisor to the President, told CNBC's "Squawk Box."

Fauci also discussed traveling for the holidays, saying "I would have no problem getting on an airplane. I'm vaccinated. I'm boosted. I know we have to wear a mask on an airplane."

However, Fauci warned that the current situation involving the Omicron variant can change quickly.

"If the counts keep going up and the test positivity keeps going up, we may need to be more restrictive," Fauci said. "But for right now, people who are vaccinated and boosted should feel reasonably comfortable."

Read the original article on Business Insider