As we celebrate Independence Day, the fact remains that we are not independent of COVID-19. A new Delta variant is ripping through communities in the United States and the CDC has announced that some of these will see spikes of cases, an uptick after weeks of a downward trend. "Currently, approximately 1,000 counties in the United States have vaccination coverage of less than 30%. These communities, primarily in the Southeast and Midwest, are our most vulnerable. In some of these areas, we are already seeing increasing rates of disease," CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told a White House briefing Thursday. Read on to see if your state is on the list—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You Have "Long" COVID and May Not Even Know It.
Number of people fully vaccinated: 645,372
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 36.11
"The average number of new daily COVID-19 cases in Idaho fell to below 70 this week, a rate that Idaho has not seen in more than a year," reports the Idaho Statesman. "Hospitalization and death rates have also slowed in the state. After peaking at nearly 20 deaths per day in December, Idaho now has a seven-day moving average of around 2 deaths per day. But the state's test positivity rate rose slightly, according to updated data."
Number of people fully vaccinated: 2,421,025
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 35.45
"Tennessee trails most of the nation in vaccination rates. This must improve, lest we put our seniors, children and most vulnerable neighbors at risk. As residents of the Volunteer State, Tennesseans have an ethos of coming together for the greater good. The call to service has never been simpler than becoming vaccinated during a pandemic," writes James E.K. Hildreth in the Tennessean.
Number of people fully vaccinated: 1,627,321
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 35.01
"Louisiana's first case of the delta plus variant — a mutation of the highly transmissible delta variant of COVID-19 — was identified this week," reports WWNO. "The delta variant, technically known as B.1.617.2, was first seen in India and is now circulating around the U.S. The strain is much more virulent and much more contagious than the original coronavirus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says it is on track to become the dominant strain in the U.S. in the coming weeks, and is now responsible for at least 20% of coronavirus infections."
Number of people fully vaccinated: 199,743
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 34.51
"The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) announced data from Wyoming residents who have tested positive for COVID-19 show how effective the vaccine is in preventing infection and death," reports K2 Radio. "A WDH review of over 2,400 confirmed and probable cases among Wyoming residents age 16 and older, between May 1 and June 15, show just under 95% of those individuals did not report being fully vaccinated against COVID-19."
Number of people fully vaccinated: 1,033,763
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 34.26
"COVID-19 hospitalizations are climbing up nearly 54% in just the last two weeks. The governor said that as hospitalizations rise in Arkansas, he is starting to see more people get vaccinated, motivated by risk and fear of catching the Delta variant," reports CBS News. "Well, I presume. I think it's driven by risk. They see the risk increasing, and they say, 'We better go and get vaccinated," Gov. Asa Hutchinson said.
Number of people fully vaccinated: 1,601,802
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 32.67
"The latest risk indicator dashboard from the Alabama Department of Public Health shows a large increase in the number of counties labeled 'very high-risk' for the spread of COVID-19," reports WSFA. "According to ADPH, the label shows an increase in the community spread for COVID-19 for that county. When the dashboard was last updated a week ago, there were just six counties in the red category. This week, the number has jumped to 21 of Alabama's 67 counties. Butler, Dallas, Dale, Macon, and Montgomery are among those labeled as 'very high-risk,' meaning COVID-19 cases are staying the same or increasing."
Number of people fully vaccinated: 888,154
Percentage of population fully vaccinated: 29.84
"As COVID-19 cases increase in some of the state's counties, health experts remain concerned that Mississippi could see a third wave of infections due to a 'perfect storm' of conditions, including the increasing prevalence of the Delta variant," reports WLOX. "While just 4 percent of coronavirus cases over the last week are attributed to Delta — a much more infectious and deadly strain — those cases will ultimately increase, especially in the estimated one million Mississippians who've yet to get the vaccine."
"The real question is whether it becomes a significant problem and, you know, crisis like it did in the early part of this year and, and then in the late part of last year. The hope is that enough people are vaccinated and were able to keep it at a reasonable manageable level," said Dr. Alan Jones, assistant vice chancellor for clinical affairs at UMMC. As for yourself, get vaccinated when it becomes available to you, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.