DOVER — The Delaware Division of Public Health reported 85% of COVID-19 hospitalizations for the week of Aug. 23 to Aug. 29 occurred in individuals who were not fully vaccinated against the virus.
Of the 117 new hospitalizations that week, the most recent available dataset, 100 were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, the DPH said. Eight of the nine COVID-19-related deaths which occurred during the same time period were unvaccinated individuals.
The DPH added 78% of the new cases reported from Aug. 23 to Aug. 29 (2023 of 2582) were from unvaccinated or partially vaccinated persons.
There have been 1,843 total breakthrough cases of COVID-19 in Delaware, occurring in approximately 0.4% of fully vaccinated individuals. The DPH defines a breakthrough case as “testing positive for COVID-19 after an individual has been fully vaccinated for two weeks or more — although it does not mean that the infection actually occurred after vaccination.”
The DPH also sequenced 229 positive test samples for variants at its lab in the past week and identified 159 samples which were positive for a variant strain. An additional two samples were sequenced at an outside lab and were found to be a COVID-19 variant for a total of 161 variants this past week.
The delta variant made of 159 of the 161 confirmed cases of variants this past week. This brings the total number of delta cases identified in Delaware to 415, although the actual number is likely higher because not every positive case is sequenced for variants.
A total of 4,109 specimens have been sequenced for COVID-19 variant strains as of Friday. The delta variant is now second behind the alpha variant, which has been found 1007 times during this sequencing. Both are considered “Variants of Concern” by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention but the delta variant is said to be more contagious, according to the CDC.
The confirmed variant cases include 1,515 adults ranging in age from 18 years old to 98 years old as well as 304 individuals under the age of 18, according to the DPH. A total of 1,316 individuals were from New Castle County, 260 were from Kent County and 243 were from Sussex County.
With the Labor Day holiday weekend here, drawing many people together for festivities, state health officials urged those who are not vaccinated to wear a mask and get vaccinated to protect against COVID-19.
According to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Delawareans should consider wearing a mask in crowded outdoor settings and for activities with close contact with others who are not fully vaccinated. To maximize protection from the Delta variant and prevent possibly spreading it to others, DPH strongly encourages wearing a mask indoors in public.
The division, in partnership with medical staff from the Delaware National Guard, continues to send mobile units to offer COVID-19 vaccines in underserved communities. Medically trained DNG staff are offering the Pfizer vaccine (for ages 12+) and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (for persons 18+) in communities with low vaccination rates in an effort to eliminate potential barriers to access.
The mobile units, which utilize trailers to transport the vaccine and provide vaccinations, are scheduled to visit the following locations this week, with COVID-19 testing also available.
Tuesday, Sept. 7
Royal Farms, Hartley, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Shoppes at Hamlet, Dover, 1 – 3 p.m.
Bancroft Elementary School, Wilmington, 2 – 6 p.m.
Wednesday, Sept. 8
Immanuel United Methodist Church, Cheswold, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Wawa, 2800 N DuPont Hwy, Dover, 1 - 3:00 p.m.
Thursday, Sept. 9
Dollar General, Seaford, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Bethel Market, Bethel, 1- 3 p.m.
Goodwill, 300 E Lea Blvd, Wilmington, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 10
Congo Funeral Home, Wilmington, 10 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
(Dates may be rescheduled if there is inclement weather.)
For a full list of community-based events statewide including those organized by vaccinating partners and community groups, visit de.gov/getmyvaccine.