The delta variant, first detected in India in late 2020, is believed to be more contagious than other COVID-19 variants and has been detected in at least 80 countries and just about every state in that country. “We know that the delta variant is even more transmissible than the UK variant and I anticipate that it will be the predominant variant in the coming months,” said Dr Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
What is the delta variant?
Cases are starting to increase in rural Missouri and Arkansas and in at least three other states with below-average vaccination rates.
“It’s a bigger, worse version of COVID, unfortunately, which is easier to pass from person to person,” said Dr. David Bronstein, infectious disease specialist at Kaiser Permanente.
Public health officials say that since the end of April, more than sixty cases of COVID-19 delta variant infections have been identified among residents of Los Angeles County. “The numbers are increasing in LA County right now and they are spreading mostly through households,” Bronstein said. “So you have a person who has the delta variant and they pass it on fairly easily to someone else in the household. “
Health officials continue to stress the importance of getting more vaccines in the arms of Americans, saying vaccinations are effective against the variant.
“We’ve seen that the vaccines we have right now are also very effective against the delta variant, especially in preventing hospitalization because of the variant,” Bronstein said.
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