As of Wednesday, 31% of Wayne County residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The delta variant has been seen in most NC counties, and the CDC has announced that over 50% of all new COVID-19 infections in the United States are from this variant of the virus. The delta variant of COVID-19 is more contagious than other strains of the virus previously seen, and the best way to protect yourself is to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
“Viruses mutate to survive,” said Dr. Brenda Weis, Wayne County health director. “The delta variant often comes with different symptoms that can be severe. With this variant, loss of taste and smell or fever is not as common. Symptoms are more like a severe cold, including a headache, runny nose, and sore throat. This variant is highly transmissible and often leads to hospitalizations. Both Pfizer and Moderna have shown that their vaccines offer a high level of protection against the delta variant.”
Dr. James Stackhouse, Wayne County Health Department medical director, said, “The more people still being infected by COVID, the greater chance for more variants. The number of unvaccinated individuals in Wayne County does contribute to the development of variants. Thankfully, current vaccines are still very effective in preventing moderate and serious cases of this variant.” Stackhouse added, “We know that pregnant women who get COVID are 22 times more likely to die and many times more likely to have low birth weight and premature babies. We also know that the breast milk of vaccinated women contains antibodies that protect a newborn. Prevent variants. Protect those around you and your family, and particularly anyone pregnant or potentially pregnant from COVID.”
The Wayne County Health Department urges unvaccinated individuals to learn more about the COVID vaccine. Make an appointment to receive your shot at www.waynegov.com/vaccine. Walk-ins are also accepted at the health department at 301 N. Herman St. in Goldsboro.