LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) - The clinicians at the vaccination clinic at Bell Gardens Veterans Park said Wednesday the push to get more people vaccinated is now more important than ever. They know as vaccination rates fall, the number of Delta variant cases of COVID-19 are going up.
"We are trying to do everything in our control to get people vaccinated," said Parth Parikh, Pico Care Pharmacy manager. "The fact that it is very, very fast to spread is the reason why we have been emphasizing vaccines within the community."
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health says the Delta variant is spreading rapidly in LA County. The agency recently reported that it made up almost half of coronavirus cases in the area.
"The variants that we see emerging are adapting more and more to be more efficient at infecting humans," said Dr. Lisa Maragakis of the Johns Hopkins Health System. "Maybe more likely to cause severe disease and hospitalization."
Health officials said nearly 60% of residents in LA County are fully vaccinated. Given that four million residents are not yet vaccinated, the risk of increased spread is very real, officials said.
Health officials say as the virus keeps spreading and mutating, the Delta variant is now the dominant strain in the U.S.
"I'm trying to protect my family and I feel they need it too so we might as well get the vaccine," said Grisel Gomez, a parent.
There is concern whether the Delta variant could be carried by vaccinated people, who then might transmit the virus to the unvaccinated.
Wednesday Los Angeles County reported eight new COVID-19 deaths and 515 new cases.
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