COVID-19 testing in Douglas County in the last month has uncovered three cases of the Delta variant of the respiratory virus, which is thought to be 60% more contagious than other iterations of the disease.
Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health officials announced the discovery of the variant Monday, and again urged all eligible community members who have not yet been vaccinated for COVID-19 to get the shot.
Early research indicates that while the Delta variant is more transmissible, all three vaccines on the marketplace — Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson — still offer strong protections against infection and severe illness.
The Delta variant spread widely in India and Britain in recent weeks, and U.S. public health officials have voiced concern about increased spread in areas with low vaccination rates — specifically in neighboring Missouri, which has seen COVID-19 cases spike recently.
LDCPH on Monday confirmed seven new cases of COVID-19 reported to the department since Friday. Lawrence Memorial Hospital currently has two patients confirmed to have COVID-19, an increase of one from Friday. 85 Douglas County residents have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic began, and the most recent death was confirmed on June 8.