JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — While many doctors are attributing the influx of new COVID cases in Florida to the delta variant, a new sub-variant is catching the eye of those in the medical community.
WebMD says the 'delta plus' variant, also known as B.1.617.2.1 or A.Y. 1, has a mutation that allows the virus to better attack lung cells and potentially escape vaccines.
Delta plus has now reportedly been found in the U.S., U.K., and nearly a dozen other countries, says Web MD. India has labeled it a variant of concern, but The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization haven’t.
The main different between the delta plus variant and the delta variant is an additional mutation in the virus’ spike protein called K417N, reports Medical News Today.
The outlet says the mutation is present in other variants as well, so it is likely not a new source of concern.
The number of new COVID-19 cases in the state of Florida is about double than what was reported the previous week.
According to the Florida Department of Health, there were 45,604 new cases during the week of July 9-15. The percent positivity for new cases — 11.5 percent — climbed to a high not seen for months.
An overwhelming majority of the new COVID-19 patients in Jacksonville hospitals are not vaccinated, according to hospital staff.