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3 cases of more contagious Delta COVID-19 variant confirmed in Douglas County

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.

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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.

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