Houston Methodist sees ‘alarming spike’ in COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations; identifies its first case of Lambda variant

85% of hospitalized patients have the Delta virus, officials said

Here's what we know about the rise in COVID-19 cases

HOUSTON – Houston Methodist Hospital says it is seeing an “alarming spike” in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations across the Houston area.

According to the hospital, staff reported the steepest increase of cases over the weekend, adding stress to many of its hospitals that are nearing capacity.

Officials with Houston Methodist said it had a little over 100 COVID-19 patients across its hospital system, but as of Monday, it has more than 185 COVID-19 patients. According to officials, the majority of its hospitalizations are those who are unvaccinated. About 85% of its hospitalized COVID-19 patients have the Delta variant, officials said.

Dr. Marc Boom, President and CEO of Houston Methodist Hospital, said the Delta variant is a top concern.

“We’re seeing it move out of control and frankly more rapidly than any of us would’ve expected,” Dr. Boom said. “[Delta has] been doubling every seven days so there’s no question what we’re seeing now is a much more contagious.”

The hospital also identified its first Lambda variant, a strain that was most common in South America but is now officially in the Houston area.

“We’ve all been enjoying an almost normal life as of late which is really a wonderful thing. That is all thanks to vaccines and all thanks to the people who have stepped up and gotten vaccinated,” Dr. Boom said.

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