No coronavirus hot spots report reported in Delaware as daily cases continue to drop

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Delaware no longer has areas with a high level of coronavirus cases.

Delaware Division of Public Health Director Dr. Karyl Rattay made the announcement at Tuesday’s Covid-19 briefing.

The last zip code to have an elevated number of cases was Delaware City in New Castle County.

Tuesday’s Covid-19 summary, delayed by computer network problems, reported one new death, an individual from New Castle County in his 60s.

Daily new cases stayed below 100 at 75.

On the closely watched metric of positive tests to total tests, the figure fell to 3.1%, a near record low.
Hospitalizations were 51, up two from the previous day, with 10 people in critical condition.

Governor John Carney said on Tuesday the state has been on a “little bit of a roller coaster” with a surge in the early stages of the pandemic, a sharp drop in cases during the summer, an uptick that came with the holidays, and a mini-surge around Easter.

Since Easter, cases have continued to drop, with nearly 53 percent of the population receiving at least one dose of vaccine. (See graphic below)

Public Health Director Rattay said the state continues to monitor faster spreading variants of the virus.

Rattay reported the Indian variant was detected in one individual. The virus may be present in the population since the individual testing positive for the variant had not traveled.

The good news is that the percentage of variants has dropped in the past couple of weeks.

The briefing followed the announcement of a Delaware-themed promotion aimed at getting more people vaccinated.

Prizes will include a scholarship to attend college in Delaware, a $302,000 prize draw, and low-numbered license plates, a hot commodity in Delaware Carney said the plates would be in the three digits.

“We wanted to make this fun,” Carney said of the contests. For example, the $302,000 prize from the State Lottery is the same as Delaware’s 302 area code.

All persons who have received and are recorded on the state system will be automatically entered for drawings.

Rattay and Carney said contests in other states have increased vaccination rates, especially among younger people with the lowest vaccination rate.

The pace of vaccinations has slowed in Delaware, with long waiting lists and limited supplies shifting quickly to abundant vaccine inventories that have led to walk-in clinics.

Rattay acknowledged that much incorrect information about vaccines exists in social media, with efforts underway on the education front.

Asked about the number of “breakthrough cases” (people who test positive after being vaccinated, Rattay estimated the number at around 300, a tiny fraction of the nearly half a million fully vaccinated Delawareans.

While testing positive, breakthrough cases carry a weak version of the virus and typically don’t require hospital stays.

Below is a graphic from Big Local News that uses Covid Act Now and the New York Times information. Laptop and desktop computer users click to get information on cases, fatalities, and vaccinations.

Clicking on the graphic or the cases, fatalities and vaccinations sections provides links to counties and states throughout the nation.

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