Doctor tracking COVID data predicts delta variant has already peaked in Florida

There was an increase in cases following the Labor Day holiday in 2020

Experts hope the decrease in COVID-19 cases in Florida is another sign the state is moving in the right direction.

Dr. Jason Salemi is an associate professor of Epidemiology at the University of South Florida College of Public Health. Salemi said that the recent uptick in cases was expected as students returned to the classroom but said that the delta variant may have already reached the most vulnerable populations.

“We should continue to see the case numbers decline. The hospitalization numbers decline,” Salemi said. “It seems as though delta has burned through the population so much that between vaccine acquired immunity and natural immunity through infection.”

[TRENDING: Become a News 6 Insider (it’s free!) | Banana tree planted in Fla. pothole | Disturbance on path toward Fla.]

Dr. Salemi told News 6 that adult ICU patients have decreased 14 percent from two weeks ago. He also said school-age children have decreased to about 185 hospitalizations, after being more than 200 two weeks ago. Adult hospitalizations have decreased 23 percent, from about 17,000 to just under 13,000.

With a mixture of Florida’s population being vaccinated or having acquired the virus naturally, Dr. Salemi said he predicts the delta variant has already peaked in the state.

“Of course, I’m concerned about the numbers moving in a bad direction mainly because I want to be optimistic. Looking lately at the numbers, our cases are down,” Selami said.

Last year, there was an increase in cases following the Labor Day holiday. Doctors say it takes about 10 days following a holiday to determine if any new cases can be attributed.

About the Author:

Troy graduated from California State University Northridge with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication. He has reported on Mexican drug cartel violence on the El Paso/ Juarez border, nuclear testing facilities at the Idaho National Laboratory and severe Winter weather in Michigan.