The Latest Data on Delta

People arrive for shots at a mobile COVID-19 vaccination site in Orlando, Florida. July 21, 2021. Image: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty
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People arrive for shots at a mobile COVID-19 vaccination site in Orlando, Florida. July 21, 2021. Image: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty

New CDC data has put the lie to the notion that vaccinated people aren’t spreading the Delta variant, STAT reports.

The numbers, from a vacation hotspot in Cape Cod, Mass. found:

  • 74% of COVID-19 cases identified July 3–17 were among vaccinated individuals. 
  • Delta was responsible for 90% of specimens from 133 patients.


The CDC also found that some vaccinated people carry similar levels of virus in their noses and throats than those who aren’t vaccinated. 

But: Experts agree the jabs do an exceptional job at preventing severe illness by stopping the virus from reaching the lungs.

Top concern: Vaccinated people could still spread the virus to immunocompromised individuals, and under-12s not yet eligible for the shots.

CDC and outside researchers still believe vaccinated people are behind “a fraction” of overall transmission, but the findings underpin the agency’s new recommendations that in areas of high transmission, people mask up indoors in public spaces.

As of Friday, 57.9% of eligible Americans were fully vaccinated.

As for the unvaccinated, cases are poised to accelerate quickly, particularly in the Southern states where vaccinations have lagged, CNN reports.

  • Georgia officials say that state’s case rate more than tripled over the last 2-week period.
  • Florida reported yesterday that record hospitalizations that eclipsed numbers from over a year ago—months before vaccines were available, AP reports
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