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Published on August 02, 2021

Delta Variant Sends COVID-19 Cases Climbing

Cone Health expects to see the number of cases needing hospital care to move back over 100.


What a difference a month makes. On July 2, seven people with COVID-19 were in Cone Health hospitals needing care. At last midnight, that number was 52. Blame it on the Delta variant. Cone Health’s data science team expects the number of people needing to be treated in the hospital because of COVID-19 to get much higher. Graph

“A couple of months ago, we would expect someone with COVID-19 to infect two or three other people,” says Michael DeWitt, senior data scientist, Cone Health. “The Delta variant doubles or triples that. It is likely as contagious as the mumps and chicken pox.”

That high infection rate means Cone Health sees the number of people with COVID-19 in its hospitals double every 10 to 14 days. That has DeWitt predicting more than 100 people in the hospital with COVID-19 this month. 

“That’s why we are really pushing vaccination among those who are eligible and everyone to mask up,” says Dr. Cynthia Snider, infectious disease specialist, Cone Health. “We have become complacent with wearing masks; we are gathering in large groups with others who may be unvaccinated, which is risky. If you have been exposed to COVID-19, remember to test 3-5 days later and self-quarantine. It’s time to protect ourselves, or it is going to be a difficult fall.” 

Cone Health urges everyone 12 and older to get vaccinated. Area vaccination sites can be found at   

The best way to protect those younger than 12 is to ensure those around them are vaccinated, including parents/guardians, eligible siblings and other family.