Worries over the Delta variant causing a spike in testing center wait times

covid testing center
Posted at 6:39 PM, Jul 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-26 19:39:43-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The line for the COVID-19 testing site on the corner of South Padre Island Dr. and Airline was wrapped around the building for most of the day. The long line even disrupted traffic in the area at times.

Seeing the increase in wait times has concerned a few locals.

“I think it’s really scary that all of this is ramping up again and the kids are about to start school… that’s what worries me the most,” says Kelli Maxwell.

Director of Public Health for Nueces County, Annette Rodriguez, says those who are fully vaccinated are at low risk.

“Unless you get sick with symptoms, you really don’t need to get tested. So even if you’ve had an exposure, you don’t have to quarantine if you’ve been fully vaccinated,” says Rodriguez.

As for what is to blame for the long lines, experts say it is the spread of the Delta variant. Here is everything you need to know about the new strain:

  • The Delta variant is currently the dominant strain of COVID-19 in the country and has been confirmed to be spreading across Texas and in our region. Experts say this is adding to the need for more testing.
  • Rodriguez says the vaccine is 96% effective in protecting you from hospitalization even if you contract the Delta variant. Those fully vaccinated will most likely only experience mild flu-like symptoms if they contract the variant.
  • She also says there have been about 170 fully vaccinated individuals who have tested positive for the virus but most of them have only experienced mild symptoms. The chances of this happening are only about 12 percent.

“I think what they have to remember is that if they have a case of flu like symptoms, and they don’t have a full-blown hospitalization, that the vaccine actually worked the way it was supposed to,” says Rodriguez.

They expect the high demand for testing to continue due to people wanting to know their status even if they are vaccinated or have mild symptoms.