The more transmissible Delta variant of Covid-19 is taking hold in Missouri and Colorado, placing them among the US states with the highest infection rates in the country.
The Delta variant, which was first identified in India, accounted for 29.1% of genomically sequenced samples in Missouri during the four weeks ended June 5, the most recent data from the Centers website revealed on Wednesday. for Disease Control and Prevention.
This is the highest proportion in the United States, and ahead of Colorado, second, with 10.9%. New Jersey, Arizona and Texas round out the top five, with the Delta variant accounting for 7.4%, 7.1%, and 6.5% of the samples during that time period.
These numbers may, however, underestimate the current spread of the Delta variant in the United States. Anthony Fauci, chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden, told a press conference on Tuesday that this new strain represented 20.6% of samples sequenced in the weeks ended June 19, up from 9.9% during of the fortnight ended on June 5.
Missouri, a state of about 6.1 million people, reported nearly 4,800 cases in the week ended June 22, according to CDC data. It is the fourth highest case volume in the United States, behind Florida, Texas and California, which rank third, second and first in the United States in terms of population.
Adjusted for population, Missouri has reported about 11.2 new infections per 100,000 people per day in the past seven days. This is the highest rate in the country and compares to a national average of around 3.4 per day. Colorado, the other hotspot for the Delta variant, ranks seventh in the United States in terms of overall infections per capita, and has averaged about 6.9 new cases per day per 100,000 people over the past year. last week.
Most of the 10 states with the highest per capita new case rates are geographically close to Missouri or Colorado, making these areas the country’s coronavirus hotspots – although daily infections remain well below peak levels in autumn and winter.
Louisiana, Arkansas, and Missouri, whose eastern borders face the Mississippi River, are among those hotspot states and also have some of the lowest first-dose vaccination proportions in the United States. Wyoming, another infection hotspot, borders Colorado and has one of the lowest proportions of vaccinated residents in the country.
An additional challenge in assessing the spread of the Delta variant in the United States is that the CDC data only shows numbers from states that have reported at least 300 sequences. This may explain the absence of Louisiana, Arkansas, Wyoming and Utah, which also experience high infection rates, in the CDC’s data set.