What to know about the Delta variant that’s causing most COVID-19 cases in the U.S.

Coronavirus

A rendering of coronavirus via the CDC.

TYLER, Texas (KETK)- The Delta variant is the most common strain of COVID-19 in the United States, according to the CDC.

In Texas and across the country, many hospitals are now overflowing with COVID-19 patients.

Currently, there are 10,463 patients hospitalized with coronavirus in the state.

In East Texas, Trauma Service Area G’s hospitalization rate grew from 10.59% on Aug. 3 to 17.37% on Aug. 10.

Trauma Service Area H, which covers counties in Deep East Texas, experienced an increase as well from 11.87% on Aug. 3 to 23.6% on Aug. 10.

With more people becoming sick with COVID-19, some might be wondering how the Delta variant is different from other versions of the virus.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this new strain is almost two times more contagious than other types of COVID-19. However, the symptoms are the same for those who get infected with the Delta strain.

Two studies from Canada and Scotland also found that patients who contracted the Delta variant were more likely to be hospitalized or have severe illness compared to people infected with the Alpha or original virus strains.

Experts said those who are unvaccinated are the most at risk of getting COVID-19 and transmitting it to other people.

The COVID vaccines protect people from serious illness and death even from the Delta variant. The shots are “highly effective,” but they do not offer 100% protection from getting the virus, the CDC says.

Individuals who have been vaccinated can still get sick from COVID-19. This is known as a breakthrough infection.

Previously, when vaccinated people became sick with COVID-19, their bodies created less of the virus than unvaccinated people. This is different if you get Delta, because vaccinated people produce the same high amount of the virus as unvaccinated individuals.

Still, if people get their shot, the amount of virus they produce goes down quicker than unvaccinated people. This is the same for those who get infected with the Delta strain.

Additionally, vaccinated people are infectious for a shorter time period than those who are unvaccinated.

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