With the current COVID-19 vaccines showing strong effectiveness against the more contagious Delta variant, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 97% of people entering hospitals nationwide with COVID-19 are unvaccinated, and nearly all of the deaths related to the virus are unvaccinated.

San Bernardino County confirmed cases and hospitalizations are also on the rise. Nationwide, the Delta variant makes up 83% of sequenced samples, which is up from 50% for the week of July 3. With nearly 50% of county residents fully vaccinated, the development in the county has been slower. The Delta variant accounts for 9% of the rising cases (up from 5.1% on July 14), although this number only reflects testing at county sites.

“While we are nowhere near the numbers of hospitalizations and deaths we saw pre-vaccine, it is still concerning to see patients once again coming into our ICU units with COVID-19,” said County Public Health Officer Michael Sequeira.

­ “If you are still unvaccinated, you are playing Russian roulette with your health — most will get through a COVID-19 infection unscathed, but there will be others who will have severe reactions, and some will die.”

The Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine is now available on request at all county-run vaccination sites for residents 18 and older, in addition to the two-shot Pfizer vaccine, which is available to those 12 and older.

Community-based organizations and employers can request to host a vaccination event or bring in a health education ambassador to address vaccine questions and concerns. To request either, email the County Department of Public Health at communityevents@dph.sbcounty.gov.

As of Tuesday, July 28, the county recorded 305,423 total cases, up 2,257 from last week's 303,166. The county recorded 297,409 recoveries, 1,600 more than the previous week. A total of 4,851 deaths have been recorded, up 15 from last week. The case fatality rate remains at 1.6%.

As of Tuesday, July 28, Redlands recorded 9,084 total cases, 70 more cases than the previous week’s 9,014.

Redlands’ total death count rose from 231 to 232. During the week of July 11, the city had 64 new cases and a test positivity rate of 3.3%.

 The previous week, Redlands had 28 new cases and a test positivity rate of 2.2%. During the week of July 11, Redlands Unified recorded 9.8 daily new cases per 100,000 residents within the district.