Health leaders worry Delta variant will trigger new wave of COVID-19 cases

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – Health leaders across the United States fear there is another wave of COVID-19 cases coming because of the Delta variant.

According to new data, coronavirus cases are now on the rise in every state.

Nationwide new infections are up 67%, death is up 26% and hospitalizations are up 36% in the past week.

Here in Tennessee, there is one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country as just 38.5% of residents are fully vaccination.

According to the Department of Health website, 418 people across the state are currently hospitalized with COVID-19.

Health officials said there is lax or resistant attitude toward vaccinations.

“The goal here is not to shame anybody,” said Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy. “I approach this as a doctor who’s care for patients of many different backgrounds and recognizes that you’ve got to start by listening to people, understanding what their concerns are and recognizing we each have different points of view, life experiences and concerns and then you got to help get them actual, factual information that’s based in science so they can make the right decisions for themselves and their families.”

Other southern states, like Arkansas, Alabama and Louisiana, are also seeing a rise in cases.

A look at Tennessee’s COVID-19 case trends show an increase in cases getting close to April and May levels, according to numbers released Monday. There’s also a disclaimer saying not all new cases from the last two weeks have been reported.

Currently Shelby County, which includes Memphis, has the most active cases in the state with more than 1,600.

The country is still in a public health emergency because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department of Health and Human Services renewed the declaration for another 90 days. The determination allows for several factors, including the emergency use authorization of vaccines, the access to funds to address the emergency and the deployment of military trauma care providers.

The United States has been in a public health emergency since late January 2020.