With the recent rise in COVID-19 cases some questions continue about the COVID-19 vaccination. The majority of those hospitalized with COVID-19, both locally and nationwide, have not been vaccinated. There have been a very small number of breakthrough infections among vaccinated individuals who have had prolonged contact with an unvaccinated Covid positive individual. As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data tracker*, more than 85% of new COVID cases are the result of the delta variant, which is more easily transferred from person to person.
As your healthcare provider, because of the current increase in COVID-19 cases and the modest percentage of our community that has been fully vaccinated, we recommend everyone use caution when in public places. All those who have not been vaccinated, please wear a mask when in public.
What we know for certain is that the delta variant of COVID-19 is spreading more easily and more quickly from person to person. According to cdc.gov, viruses constantly change and can become more easily transmitted. Scientists monitor these changes and carefully study new cases and, by doing so, can learn how changes to the virus might affect the spread and the severity of illness in those who contract the virus. Several variants of COVID-19 have been identified, one of which is the delta variant.
We also know that the small number of vaccinated individuals experiencing the breakthrough infections are not as ill as those who have not been vaccinated. The vaccines are effective in preventing death and in almost all cases, hospitalization. Most individuals with healthy immune systems will naturally have an immune response to a virus. However, COVID-19 has been shown to overwhelm the immune systems of those who have not been vaccinated and even those without underlying health conditions. A vaccine works with your body to train your immune system how to best respond to a virus. With this “training,” individuals' bodies respond both more strongly and more effectively, resulting in a person being less sick and more likely to recover from the virus.
Coffee Regional Medical Center recommends all eligible individuals be vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine. We are fortunate to have plenty of all three vaccines available and a vaccination clinic open to the public at CRMC every Tuesday and Wednesday. The DPH also continues to offer vaccines locally please check their website for days and times.
If you have been vaccinated, avoid prolonged face-to-face contact with those who have not been vaccinated. If you have not been vaccinated please consider getting the vaccination as soon as possible. It is the right thing to do. For more information on how you can be vaccinated or tested for COVID-19, please visit us online at www.coffeeregional.org/coronavirus.
*For information on the data tracker for the Delta variant can be found at https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#variant-proportions