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Surgeon General Expresses Concerns as Delta Spreads

7/19/21—In light of the increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, along with stalled vaccination rates, Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy has voiced concern for the Delta variant currently sweeping the United States. With the 7-day average of COVID cases up almost 70% within one week, the Delta variant is said to be a driving factor in the 36% uptick in hospitalizations. Of these hospitalizations, over 97% are unvaccinated patients, with this same demographic allotting for a majority of COVID deaths.  

Murthy encouraged those who have been on the fence to protect themselves through vaccination, and emphasized the importance of masking and social distancing. With the majority of Delta cases in the vaccinated population leading to asymptomatic infection, detecting those who require quarantine can be tricky. While some studies show that vaccination reduces the amount of virus produced in the body, resulting in less opportunity for transmission, the World Health Organization (WHO) has reiterated that more studies need to be done to determine how effectively vaccinations are at mitigating transmission. 

WHO officials urge continued mask usage and social distancing –a message now echoed by the US Surgeon General. Encouraging localities to enact reactive guidance, based on transmission in their communities, Murthy voiced his support for tailored preventative measures where needed. As Nevada now ranks fifth in the US for most new cases in the last two weeks, some resorts and casinos are reinstating masking requirements for employees, based on the recommendations of local health officials. Los Angeles County has enacted an indoor mask mandate for all, after seeing the highest amount of new cases since March. Dr. Muntu Davis, Los Angeles County’s public health officer, is not ruling out additional restrictions, should the situation worsen. Muntu called the current surge an “all-hands-on-deck moment” for those in Los Angeles. 

When dealing with COVID-19, the speed of the contagion and the amount of asymptomatic spread means that contact tracing needs to be even faster, in order to combat transmission most effectively. Speed, accuracy, and the ability to perform on a large scale are just some of the ways digital contact tracing can augment the manual contact tracing process.  

AlertTrace was developed to help clients improve employee compliance with safety guidelines and provide rapid, reliable data for ending the chain of transmission.  In the event that an employee tests positive, administrators are able to quickly identify an employee’s historical anonymized contacts to safeguard the workforce in a matter of minutes.  

With military-grade data security, the data is encrypted end-to-end and captured anonymously to ensure information is safe, secure and wearer privacy is protected. Providing the highest level of privacy and data security, AlertTrace utilizes real-time data analytics to drive IoT-enabled solutions, enabling data-driven decisions based on the contacts made in their facility. Administrators can quickly and easily identify patterns such as where the most contacts are being made, gaining insights and identifying high-risk behavior. With this information, measures can be taken to ensure hotspots are diffused and spread is mitigated in the workplace. The system also gives leadership the ability to accurately compile reporting  information of COVID cases, whether it be for mandatory OSHA records, or for assisting local health departments in their contact tracing efforts.  

Contact us today to learn more about improving employee compliance with health and safety guidelines in your facility.