Guilford County health official says COVID metrics in Piedmont trending in wrong direction

Piedmont Triad News

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — The Delta variant is now responsible for the majority of COVID cases in Guilford County.  

As the more contagious variant spreads quickly across our country, doctors here at home are echoing the message that now is the time to get vaccinated.  

“Right now, our metrics are going in the wrong direction from the number of cases that we’re seeing every day to the positivity rate,” said Dr. Iulia Vann, Guilford County Health Director. “We have seen an increase in cases in the past two weeks or so as well as our positivity rates.”

The numbers have DVann and many others in her field concerned.  

Last week, a health provider at Wake Forest Baptist said the likelihood is that you either get the shot or get the virus—choose how you want to become immune.  

The main reason is that the Delta variant is said to be 66% more contagious than the original COVID-19 strain.  

“70 percent of all of the new cases that we are identifying right now are Delta variant,” she explained.  

This poses another hurdle for hospital workers. Vann expects a jump in Delta variant cases in the coming days.  

“There is a projection that by August 1st, all or 90% of the new cases are going to be delta variant,” Vann said.  

While vaccine clinic turnout has decreased, hesitancy remains consistent in marginalized communities.  

But health directors aren’t giving up on getting people vaccinated as they continue their mobile clinics.  

“We know that every vaccine in our community matters,” Vann said.  

The fear is if people refuse to wear masks or get vaccinated, we will revert the progress that’s already been made.  

“Let’s learn from the lessons that we have had last year and try to be more proactive this year and try to use those lessons to decrease the transmission,” Vann said.  

The Guilford County Health Department is working with UNCG to survey people who are coming to vaccine clinics to figure out what are some of the hurdles are that have caused them to wait this long to get the shot.  

Vann said if you refuse to wear a mask, at least do your best to social distance.  

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