Delta strain a looming threat


WYOMING – Data received from Wyoming’s state Department of Health (WDOH) has indicated the Delta variant of the novel coronavirus is the prevalent strain being contracted in Wyoming. 

According to information obtained from WDOH and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Delta variant of COVID-19 is more contagious than the other virus strains (Alpha, Beta, Gamma) previously observed. The Delta variant was first detected in March of 2021 in the United States and December of 2020 in India. 

In addition to spreading more easily, the CDC has also stated the variant has a potential reduction in neutralization by some EUA monoclonal antibody treatments and potential reduction in neutralization by post-vaccination sera, meaning the vaccinations may not work as well with the new variants.

WDOH began tracking the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infections in March of 2020. Since then, there have been 53,772 confirmed cases throughout the state and 766 deaths which the state says were linked to a COVID infection.

As of July 23, 2021, Goshen County had 1,177 laboratory-confirmed cases with 96 probable cases and 24 deaths. Regionally, Platte County has had 504 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 235 probable cases and 14 deaths; Niobrara County had 74 laboratory-confirmed cases with 90 probable cases and three deaths; Laramie County had 9,151 laboratory-confirmed cases with 2,187 probable cases and 129 deaths. 

Currently, Goshen County has reported 19 active cases; Platte County has reported 21 active cases; Laramie County has reported 179 active cases; Niobrara County has reported one active case.

The Wyoming Department of Corrections (DOC) issued an update on July 23, 2021, stating four staff members and one inmate had tested positive for COVID at the Wyoming Medium Correctional Institution in Torrington, two inmates had tested positive for COVID at the Wyoming Honor Farm in Riverton and two inmates had tested positive for COVID at the Wyoming State Penitentiary in Rawlins. 

According to the DOC’s records, three inmates’ deaths have been attributed to COVID-19 infections. 

Torrington Community Hospital has no COVID related hospitalizations. Platte County currently has two COVID patients hospitalized, Cheyenne Regional Medical Center has 40 COVID patients hospitalized, and Cheyenne Veterans Affairs Medical Center has four COVID patients hospitalized. There are currently 78 COVID patients hospitalized statewide. 

Goshen County has 28.15% (3,765 people) of its population vaccinated, Platte County currently has 29.07% (2,514 people) of its population vaccinated, Laramie County has 34.08% (34,384 people) of its population vaccinated and Niobrara County has 22.58% (528 people) of its population vaccinated. Statewide, 32.33% (187.640) of Wyoming’s population have been vaccinated. Of those vaccinated, 12.3% of adolescents (12-17) have received the vaccine, 40.7% of adults (18+) have been vaccinated and 60.5% of seniors (65+) have received the vaccine.

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