Deaconess works to confirm whether COVID-19 Delta variant is in Tri-State

Published: Jul. 2, 2021 at 4:52 PM CDT
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Dr. Anthony Fauci confirms the Delta variant of COVID-19 is now in all 50 states. The question now raised: is it near the Tri-State area?

Deaconess officials say it all comes down to if you’re vaccinated or not. They say vaccination numbers play a big factor in how hard this variant hits people in the Tri-State.

“We definitely think it’s the predominant variant that we’re seeing here today, we don’t know that officially yet,” Deaconess Chief Medical Officer Dr. Brad Scheu said.

Scheu says to find out officially if the Delta variant is in the area, there’s a series of gene testing in labs that local health officials don’t have access to.

That’s where the state comes in to help, but it could take a while.

“We’re sending a certain amount of samples to them on a weekly basis and it just takes weeks to process that,” Dr. Scheu said.

The good news is that Scheu says the vaccines are performing well against the variant.

“I think the ones that are the most at risk are the ones that haven’t been vaccinated, or the ones not wearing masks in those close social settings,” Scheu said. “I think the real message is if you haven’t been vaccinated, now is the time to do it to protect yourself from these variants.”

Scheu says the variant doesn’t have to get in the way of your summer plans.

“If you’re vaccinated and taking the right precautions, you should be safe against this,” he said.

Scheu says even if by the small chance you get the variant after being vaccinated, there’s little chance you’ll feel sick, and a smaller chance you’ll be hospitalized.

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