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COVID-19 Delta variant confirmed in Williamson County

Offiicials said the variant was discovered and confirmed through lab testing in June.

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas — On Friday, the Williamson County and Cities Health District (WCCHD) announced in a press release that the first three cases of the Delta variant of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Williamson County. 

WCCHD said the variant was discovered and confirmed through lab testing in June. The Delta variant, also known as B.1.617.2, is around 60% more transmissible than the already highly infectious Alpha variant that was found in the United Kingdom in late 2020.

RELATED: COVID-19 variant 'more contagious' than previous ones. Doctors discuss what that means for Texas

“It is not surprising to see the Delta variant in our community given how rapidly it spreads,” said WCCHD Lead Epidemiologist Allison Stewart. “The good news is that the mRNA vaccines have been proven to be highly effective against this variant. The concern locally is that we have more than half the county that isn’t vaccinated and whom are still highly susceptible to this variant.”

WCCHD said that this variant may be associated with an increased risk of hospitalization but mRNA vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna are still highly effective against it. 

At this time, Williamson County remains in the Yellow Phase and urges all eligible residents to get vaccinated to protect themselves and their community.

Travis County hasn't confirmed any cases of the variant yet, but local leaders are also continuing to encourage residents who are not vaccinated to go ahead and get the vaccine.

"The Delta variant is super scary and everybody watching this needs to think again about loved ones, friends who aren't vaccinated," Travis County Judge Andy Brown said. "If there's one case in Williamson County, my guess is there's already cases in Travis County that we just haven't detected."

As of June 30, about 58% of Williamson County's population over the age of 12 is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. In Travis County, that rate is about 60%.

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