(CNN) – The Delta variant continues to be a major threat to America’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic and getting more vaccines into the guns is one way to fight it, according to an expert.
The highly contagious and aggressive variant was first detected in India and has spread to the majority of U.S. states, officials said.
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In Washoe County, Nevada, for example, 17 cases of the Delta variant have been detected, the county’s regional information center said in a press release. Two of the Delta variant cases involve students at Hunsberger Elementary School.
âWe cannot continue to have pockets of unvaccinated counties and areas in this country,â Dr. Jayne Morgan, executive director of the Coronavirus Task Force at Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta, told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield on Saturday. . These pockets of unvaccinated populations create a place where variants can continue to grow, “and then these mutations have the ability to keep learning, getting smarter, and possibly escaping the vaccine status of the rest of us.” Morgan said.
The fact that children under 12 are not allowed to be vaccinated against Covid-19 is the reason more eligible people need to be vaccinated, Morgan said.
“Our children represent this pocket of our society that currently cannot be vaccinated, so it depends on the rest of us to step up and get vaccinated, so that we can protect all those who cannot currently be vaccinated,” Morgan said.
It is not just the virus that negatively affects children.
Childhood type 2 diabetes cases more than doubled during the coronavirus pandemic at a Louisiana hospital, new research shows.
Dr Daniel Hsia, associate professor at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, and colleagues looked at the hospitalization rate for recent-onset type 2 diabetes in children at Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital of Baton Rouge.
They found that from March to December 2019, the rate was 0.27% – 8 cases out of 2,964 hospitalizations. During the same period in 2020, the rate jumped to 0.62% – 17 cases out of 2,729 hospitalizations.
âThese are very small numbers,â Hsia told CNN. âWe’re one hospital, but we believe we can be a microcosm of what’s going on across the country.â
Type 2 diabetes is by far the most common type of diabetes, and it is associated with obesity, poor diet and lack of exercise.
Of the 25 cases of type 2 diabetes over the two years, 23 involved black children, Hsia’s team noted.
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, black, Latino, Asian, Native American, Alaskan and Pacific Islander children may be at increased risk for type 2 diabetes. Hsia said that these existing health disparities may have worsened during the pandemic.
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“The risk factors for type 2 diabetes can get even worse during a time like this, when they have to stay home, they don’t have access to healthy foods or physical activity, and they there are sleep disturbances, “Hsia said.
Travel figures are on the rise
More than 152 million people in the United States are fully vaccinated, according to CDC data on Saturday, representing about 45.8% of the total population.
Almost 66% of adults in the United States received at least one dose of a vaccine on Saturday, according to the CDC. President Joe Biden’s goal of 70% adults with at least one dose by July 4 is almost likely to fail, and officials are now targeting mid-July for that milestone.
As the nation moves slowly with vaccinations, more and more people are taking advantage of the summer months to travel.
More than 2.1 million people were screened at TSA airport checkpoints on Friday, according to the agency’s official tally, marking the eighth day in June when the number topped 2 million.
TSA spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein said on Saturday morning that this was the highest volume of checkpoints since the start of the pandemic.
The 2,137,584 people who passed through checkpoints on Friday are more than three times as many as on the same day in 2020, according to the TSA website.
However, checks still have not returned to their pre-2019 pandemic levels, where the TSA saw more than 2.7 million passengers screened on the same day.
While some national vaccine lotteries end, others begin
Ohio, which was the first state to run a lottery for people vaccinated with prizes of up to $ 1 million, ended its program this week, according to the state’s health department.
âThe Vax-a-Million promotion was a resounding success for Ohio, with significant increases in vaccinations in the first two weeks of the promotion,â Gov. Mike DeWine said. “The best news is that we have more Ohioans protected from Covid thanks to the potency of the vaccine. I continue to urge Ohio residents to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their loved ones from this deadly virus.”
While states like California are also ending their million dollar incentive campaigns, others are getting started.
Massachusetts will announce its first million dollar winner on Tuesday, with four more draws in the coming weeks.
Illinois’ “All In For The Win” contest offers residents a chance of up to $ 1 million, as well as additional scholarships for vaccinated youth. The first jackpot draw takes place on July 8.
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