COVID-19 in San Antonio / Bexar County, 15 August 2021



7- Day average of new cases:  1,391 per day

27,918 new cases in the last 30 days

Total cases: 259,636

Hospitalized patients with COVID-19:  1,299

          Patients in the ICU:  333

          Patients on ventilators:  214

          97% of hospitalized patients are unvaccinated

Deaths confirmed by Metro Health:  3,673


Vaccination statistics:

78.2% of people aged 12 and up have had at least one dose of vaccine

63.9% of people aged 12 and up are fully vaccinated


The delta variant of COVID-19 is the dominant strain involved in the current surge of COVID-19 in the United States.  There is concern that vaccination is not as effective against the delta variant and this has prompted the CDC to recommend fully vaccinated people wear masks while indoors in areas with significant spread of COVID-19.  This is because vaccinated people can still develop symptomatic infection and spread COVID-19 to others.  The experience with the delta variant in the United Kingdom has revealed that the development of symptomatic COVID-19 increased from 8% against the alpha variant to 21% against the delta variant in patients who have received both doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.  Vaccination with the Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca vaccine reduced the risk of death from COVID-19 regardless of the variant type by more than 85%.  Although the risk for symptomatic infection with COVID-19 is higher with the delta variant and fully vaccinated people can spread COVID-19,vaccination remains beneficial.   The risk of symptomatic infection is significantly lower, and the risk death is greatly reduced in patients who are fully vaccinated.  If we can achieve herd immunity on a global scale, the SARS CoV2 will have limited opportunity to spread and mutate into more pathogenic variants.  The only way to achieve immunity is to either get vaccinated or get COVID-19.  I much prefer the vaccine to COVID-19.

Source:  BMJ 2021;374:n1960


The bottom line, for those of us living or working in Bexar County, is that COVID-19 is spreading rapidly.  The hospitals are under stress.  Our capacity to care for patients in need of hospitalization is approaching its limit.  The statistics above regarding hospitalized patients provides the most important statistic of all.  97% of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 are not fully vaccinated.  I urge all of my patients, especially those who have medical conditions that increase their risk for severe COVID-19, to get vaccinated.

Jeffrey Feinstein, MD

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