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Delta Variant Covid

An average number of new cases of SARS-CoV-19 infections in Illinois have doubled in the first half of July 2021.

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BY DR. NILESH D. MEHTA

HI INDIA NEWS DESK
CHICAGO, IL – We all know how we endured 2020 as the year, one that wreaked havoc worldwide due to the SARS-CoV-19 pandemic. While the vaccines were in clinical trials, the world waited with bated breath. Through different scientific platforms, multiple vaccines got approved all over and folks started getting vaccinated which eased some tensions a few months ago.

The summer of 2021 has seen a setback especially because vaccine hesitancy has stymied some of our success. An average number of new cases of SARS-CoV-19 infections in Illinois have doubled in the first half of July 2021. About 186 million Americans have received at least one jab, but another potentially eligible 90 million Americans have not received it yet. One message that has been sent to folks living in the USA is that these vaccinations are not a punishment but an act of prevention. We all know that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Hospitalizations are also rising and patients are younger, sicker and mostly unvaccinated in the current uptick of cases. This is largely driven by the Delta variant, also known as B.1.617.2. At the present time,the Delta variant is the dominant strain in the United States and is estimated to be 40%-80% more infectious than the Alpha variant.

Experts in the field of infectious disease including Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have warned that one week average of coronavirus infections soared nearly 70 percent. This clearly is alarming news. As a result of this sudden surge in cases, hospitalizations have also increased in the last week as well. Rochelle Walensky called this new wave as “ a pandemic of the unvaccinated”

As a means through this column in hiINDiA, I urge our readers who are unvaccinated to kindly get your vaccination jabs. Based on science and prior experiences with vaccines, it is clear that the sooner we get the unvaccinated folks vaccinated, the impact of this pandemic will continue to lessen and all of us can head towards some sense of long lasting normalcy. Kindly speak to your friends, relatives, neighbors either in person or through social media and spread the word on getting vaccinated. Yes, there are some genuine concerns raised about the potential side effects of vaccines. But, we all need to collectively look at the “big picture” which will clearly get brighter if we get our vaccinations. In life, we always tend to assess risks v benefits in the actions we take and in the case of this pandemic, there is no doubt that the benefits far outweigh the risks associated with vaccinations.

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