PROVINCETOWN, Mass. (WWLP) – The delta variant has been found in a cluster of COVID-19 cases linked to the recent outbreak in Provincetown through genetic testing, state health officials said Friday.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health said the delta variant, known to be more transmissible than the original COVID-19 variant, was identified with vaccinated individuals. However, the number of cases linked to those fully vaccinated in the state remains “extremely low, at 0.1 percent” which is 5,166 cases out of the over 4.3 million fully vaccinated residents.
No other new COVID variants were found within the cluster in Provincetown.
“Individuals infected with the Delta variant tend to have more virus in their respiratory tract than other variants and infected individuals may carry the virus longer. These two factors contribute to the increased transmissibility seen with the Delta variant,” the DPH said.
The delta variant has spread rapidly, it accounts for 83 percent of new cases nationwide and 68 percent of new cases in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont from July 4-17. All COVID-19 vaccines being administered across the country are “very effective” against the variants and “remain the single best way for people to protect themselves, loved ones, and their community,” health officials said.
Massachusetts has over 900 locations for residents to get vaccinated for free, along with in-home and mobile options.