Health leader says COVID-19 Delta variant cases are creeping up in Virginia

Virginia reported 2,361 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday

The Virginia Department of Health says Thursday is the largest single-day spike of COVID-19 cases since mid-February.

ROANOKE, Va. – Thursday marked the largest single-day increase of COVID-19 cases in Virginia since Valentine’s Day, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

Central Shenandoah Health District Director Dr. Laura Kornegay said 11.9% of the COVID-19 cases in Northwest Virginia come from the Delta variant, which she said is 40-60% more transmissible than the Alpha variant.

Kornegay said because the Delta variant spreads quickly, they need 80 to 85% herd immunity.

With students heading back to school, she recommends taking precautions as vaccines for children under the age of 12 are not available yet.

“But until we have additional vaccine available for younger age ranges it’s more important than ever to both have adults vaccinated and to implement those successful layered mitigation strategies to prevent,” she said.

Pfizer is expected to obtain emergency use to authorize vaccinations for children between the ages of 5 and 11 by September.

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