Marin County is experiencing an uptick in COVID-19 cases, but this mini spike in infections is unlike previous surges, the county’s public health officer said Tuesday.

“It doesn’t mean the same thing in terms of the threat to our community, especially with regards to severe illness, hospitalization and death,” Dr. Matt Willis told the Board of Supervisors.

Willis said the number of hospitalizations has remained fairly stable despite a rise in infections that began in mid-June in large part because between one in four and one in five of the cases have involved people who were fully vaccinated.

The emergence of a new dominant strain of the virus, the delta variant, which is more infectious than previous strains, is causing the increase in cases. This strain of the virus, which is becoming the dominant COVID-19 strain nationally and internationally, now accounts for about 80% of all COVID-19 cases in Marin.

Fortunately, so far vaccines have proven effective in providing protection from serious illness.

“We’ve had 177 cases of people who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 after they were fully vaccinated,” Willis said. “Among those only three have been hospitalized, and there have been no deaths.

“No one who has been vaccinated in Marin County has died of COVID-19,” Willis said. “All 185 of our deaths have been among people who were unvaccinated.”

Willis said, however, the majority of Marin residents who are becoming infected in this new wave have been unvaccinated, and remain vulnerable to serious illness and death. He said among unvaccinated Marin residents the case rate is 12  per 100,000 residents, compared to a case rate of about 2.5 per 100,000 residents for people who are vaccinated.

“Our surge in cases is really being driven by people who remain unvaccinated, which in some ways is remarkable given that right now only 8% of our eligible population …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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