The Indian ‘Delta’ variant could have an increased ability to cause hospitalizations among unvaccinated people, a new study finds.
Researchers from Public Health England found that the variant could cause hospitalizations at a rate double the British ‘Alpha’ variant.
It is a worrying sign for the world, as the most dominant Covid variant could be even more dangerous for people who have not yet received their shots.
Unvaccinated pockets of the U.S. are especially at risk as well, as a Delta fueled outbreak nears record levels stateside and hospitalizations reach critical levels.
A study finds that the Indian ‘Delta’ variant has twice the ability to cause hospitalizations than the Alpha COVID-19 variant. The United States is suffering a surge of hospitalizations amid a Delta-fueled Covid outbreak. Pictured: A woman in Shreveport, Louisiana, visits her hospitalized husband in the hospital’s Covid ward
Researchers, who published their findings in Lancet, gathered data on all COVID-19 patients identified with the Alpha or Delta variant from March 29 to May 23.
In total, 43,338 patients were included in the study, with 8,682 with Delta and 34,656 with the Alpha variant.
The team found that 74 percent of all participants hospitalized were unvaccinated.
After adjusting for hazards like age, comorbidities and other factors that increase risk for hospitalizations, they found that the Delta variant was twice as likely to cause a severe case of the virus.
The data is revealed as the Delta variant hammers the United States, causing new cases and hospitalizations to near record levels.
More than 100,000 Americans are being hospitalized every day due to the virus, the highest level since the winter-COVID-19 surge – which is still the largest the country has suffered.
Unlike winter, though, a vaccine is now available which can reduce the virus’ ability to cause hospitalizations.
Parts of the U.S. south with lower vaccination rates are especially dealing with a surge in hospitalizations.
In Alabama, so many patients are in the ICU with COVID-19 complications that capacity has eclipsed the 100 percent mark.
Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and Texas are all also reporting current ICU capacity usage of over 90 percent.
Each of those states, other than Florida, have a vaccination rate below the national average of 61 percent.
Packed ICUs can have deadly consequences, even to Americans who do not have Covid.
Last week, it was reported a U.S. Army veteran had died of gallstone pancreatitis after failing to find a hospital in Texas that could treat him.
Louisiana, which is currently recording 89 percent hospital capacity used, is in an especially dire situation.
The state, which already reached a record mark in new Covid deaths last week, is now dealing with hurricane Ida slamming it on the south coast.
New Orleans, the largest city in the state, lost electricity all together late Sunday night, leaving many hospitals that are already low on resources scrambling.
Average daily deaths in the country also eclipsed 1,000 in late August as well, a mark not previously reached since March.
Deaths have grown by 266 percent over the past month, from 354 a day on July 30 to 1,296 on on August 29.
Cases have also doubled over the past month, from 71,663 on July 29 to 156,886 on August 29 – with the Delta variant accounting for nearly every single new case in the country.