Facts about COVID-19 and the Delta variant

COVID-19 infection rates, including those within an entire household, continue to increase. It is recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics that everyone, including those 2 years of age and older, wear a face mask, physically distance and wash hands regularly to reduce the spread of the virus. It is also recommended that everyone who can get a COVID-19 vaccine should get one, which will help protect you and your loved ones from serious illness and death related to COVID-19.

6 facts to know about COVID-19 and the Delta variant

  1. The COVID-19 Delta variant spreads more easily than other virus strains. It may be nearly 2x as contagious as previous variants.
  2. Unvaccinated people are most at-risk. While vaccinated people may get COVID-19, data is showing that COVID-19 vaccines help prevent serious illness and hospitalization. Those at highest risk of getting seriously ill from the virus, and spreading the virus, are those who aren’t vaccinated for COVID-19.
  3. People, including younger people, are getting sicker faster. With more older people vaccinated, younger people are getting seriously ill with the virus.
  4. COVID-19 will continue to mutate. The best way to slow the development of new variants is to protect yourself by wearing a mask and getting the COVID-19 vaccine as it becomes available to you.
  5. More than 1 in 4 who get COVID-19 will have symptoms even after 4 weeks. While most people get over COVID-19 within weeks of illness, some people experience post-COVID-19 conditions that continue 4 weeks or more after infection. Several recent studies show that between 27-33% of patients who get COVID-19 and were not hospitalized developed some lasting symptoms, no matter their age, prior health or severity of their infection. While much is still unknown, the CDC reports these “long-haul” conditions can come to life in a variety of ways, ranging from difficulty breathing, fatigue, joint pain or mood changes to even more serious issues like multi-organ damage or autoimmune conditions.
  6. With COVID-19 and flu spreading this fall, vaccines are the best protection. Symptoms of COVID-19, flu and colds can act similarly. Testing may be needed to confirm which virus you have. Vaccination for COVID-19 and flu, face masks, physical distancing and staying home when you aren’t feeling well are important in slowing the spread of these viruses.

Protecting yourself and your loved ones

You can protect your health and get FDA-approved and FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines for $0 cost-share through the national public health emergency period. If you receive additional services during your vaccination appointment, you may be responsible for copays, deductibles, coinsurance or out-of-network charges, according to your benefits plan. Get the cost-share details.

Symptom checker

If you're feeling sick, use our symptom checker to help assess your risk for COVID-19.

COVID-19 testing

COVID-19 testing is available at no charge to you through the national public health emergency period.

We're listening

We’re committed to keeping you up to date on COVID-19. We're taking note of your questions and working hard to provide answers.


Based on publicly available information via the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website on case rates, protection, Delta variant and other variants, as of August 9, 2021.