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U of U doctors concerned over Delta variant of COVID-19

Posted at 11:45 AM, Jun 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-22 13:45:05-04

SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah doctors shared their concern Tuesday over the rising number of COVID-19 cases stemming from the Delta variant.

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Doctors say the variant, which was first identified in India and recently detected in Utah, may be responsible for nearly 10% of new infections in the U.S., and about 50% more transmissible than other strains.

"In the UK, it has become the dominate strain, in other words, most of the cases are thought to be linked to this variant and it may also be, even though I don’t think we have hard proof of this, more variant; that is to say, it can cause more serious disease, hospitalizations and death,” said Dr. Sankar Swaminathan, Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at U of U Health.

Doctors say the easiest way to protect against the Delta variant is to get vaccinated. For those who choose not to get the vaccine, it is recommended to continue wearing masks and social distancing.

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Swaminathan warned the variant will circulate and spread throughout unvaccinated groups — which in Utah is the younger population of people 25-44 years old.

Even vaccinated residents are told to remain cautious as vaccines are not 100 percent effective.