Delta not tied to more severe COVID-19 outcomes, CDC report suggests

While the delta COVID-19 variant is known to be more transmissible, it isn't closely linked to more severe outcomes among hospitalized patients, according to the CDC's Oct. 22 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

Researchers looked at 7,615 COVID-19 hospitalizations in the U.S. from January through August, comparing outcomes between the pre-delta period (January to June) to when the strain became predominant in the country (July to August). Hospitalizations included in the analysis were among nonpregnant adults. 

Compared to the pre-delta period, researchers did not observe significant differences in the proportion of hospitalized COVID-19 patients who were admitted to an intensive care unit, received invasive mechanical ventilation or died while hospitalized during the delta period. 

The report did find the proportion of hospitalized COVID-19 patients aged 18-49 rose from 24.7 percent of all hospitalizations pre-delta to nearly 36 percent when the strain became dominant.

"Lower vaccination coverage in this age group likely contributed to the increase in hospitalized patients during the delta period," the report said.

Overall, about 72 percent of all COVID-19 related hospitalizations during the delta period were among unvaccinated adults. 

To view the full report, click here


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