” Just How Dangerous Is The Delta Variant”

That’s the title of a piece late last week by the highly respected epidemiologist and infectious disease expert over at the MacIver Institute, Dan ” nothing to get excited about ” O’Donnell. O’Donnell does his typical cherry picking of stats routine to make his case that the Delta variant isn’t as deadly as the original Wuhan virus, and then spends a bunch of time decrying the fear-mongering from government and the media. Almost entirely missing from O’Donnell’s ‘ analysis” ( I almost want to call it an Arizona style audit ), is any thorough mention of what’s going on in the south where hospitals, including children’s hospitals, are nearing or exceeding ICU capacity. So I thought it might be instructive to dig a little deeper into the so called” fear-mongering ” O’Donnell decries by hearing directly from people working in hospitals and state health departments across the south.

In Louisiana:

“I am as worried about our children today as I have ever been. This virus, the Delta variant of COVID, is every infectious disease specialist’s and epidemiologist’s worst nightmare,” said Dr. Mark Klein, Physician-in-Chief at Children’s Hospital and a Professor of Pediatrics at LSUHSC and Tulane.

In Florida:

At one South Florida hospital, some COVID patients have had to wait in the triage area for up to a day since no ICU beds were immediately available, said a doctor in the area who requested not to be identified as they were unauthorized to speak to the media. Jimenez of the UF Health Shands Hospital in Gainesville focused on another growing sentiment among some doctors and nurses: depletion. “Humanly, you break at some point,” Jimenez said. “You just emotionally break.”

In Arkansas:

A record 165 covid patients were hospitalized Monday, 127 covid patients were in intensive care units Wednesday and 66 ventilators were in use Thursday, according to Martine Pollard, a spokeswoman for Mercy Hospital who released a joint statement with the region’s largest health care providers.

The health care system in Arkansas is in danger of being overwhelmed because of the covid-19 cases, along with other conditions such as heart attacks and strokes, according to Dr. Joe Thompson, president and CEO of Arkansas Center for Health Information.

“I think we are in for a very rough next six to eight weeks,” he said.

In Texas:

Hospitalizations due to coronavirus in North Texas have increased 292% over the past month, according to data from UT-Southwestern Medical Center. Chief State Epidemiologist Jennifer Shuford said she and others at the Texas Department of State Health Services are concerned.

We’ve been living this pandemic now for a year and a half,” Shuford said. “We thought we had seen the worst of it with those first two pandemic waves that we experienced. This third wave that we’re having right now in Texas is showing a very steep increase in cases and hospitalizations, as great or even steeper than what we were seeing with those first two waves.”

In Mississippi:

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi’s top health official said the delta coronavirus variant is “sweeping across Mississippi like a tsunami” as the state reported more than 3,000 new cases of the highly transmittable virus in a single day Thursday.

“If we look at our trajectory, we see that it’s continuing to increase without any real demonstration of leveling off or decreasing,” State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs said during a virtual briefing with news media.

Dobbs said 90% of new coronavirus cases in Mississippi are now the delta variant. The state’s major hospital systems are overwhelmed — 178 new patients were hospitalized in a single day Wednesday — with almost no ICU beds available for patients, he said.

In Alabama:

Alabama is still firmly in the middle of the delta wave – the steepest coronavirus wave seen here yet. And the virus is taking a toll on the state’s hospitals.“All I can say is, it’s not going in the right direction at all,” said Don Williamson, president of the Alabama Hospital Association. “If you look at the curve and compare the curve of this spike with the curve of [previous spikes], it is frankly much more frightening.

And hospitalization rates are on the rise in Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Arizona, and elsewhere.

So how dangerous is the Delta variant? If you read Dan O’Donnell he doesn’t seem to think it’s much of a big deal. Or if you listen to Dr. Marty Makary, what’s going on in the south is just a ” bump”.

But if you listen to health care people actually experiencing this in the south they’re using words like ” spike ” ” surge ” ” wave ” ” alarming” ” tsunami ” ” frightening ” etc.

Some bump.


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4 thoughts on “” Just How Dangerous Is The Delta Variant”

  1. Janel Brandtjen ain’t one of my favorite politicians – for myriad reasons. But maybe, just maybe, could we begin to consider the possibility that there are some pervasive vested interests hard at work to keep the national panic in place?

    1. Can you elaborate Charles Kuehn? Not sure what Janel Brandtjen has to do with this particular post.

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