As Delta Variant Surges, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Releases New COVID-19 Information Video Update

Dartmouth-Hitchcock COVID-19 Video Update

With the Food and Drug Administration approval of the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine in the process for approval, we hope that will help people decide to get vaccinated.

Michael S. Calderwood, MD, MPH

As the contagious COVID-19 Delta variant leads to infection and hospitalization rates not seen since last winter, Dartmouth-Hitchcock (D-H) has released a new COVID-19 update video hosted by Michael S. Calderwood, MD, MPH, Chief Quality Officer at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. This video discusses the Delta variant and how it’s impacting hospitalizations; explains the difference between a third dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines for immunocompromised and booster shots; recommendations for fall travel and public gatherings; and why the anti-parasitic drug irvermectin is not an approved treatment for COVID-19.

“We have seen an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the community, as well as an increase in hospitalizations,” Calderwood said. “The state of New Hampshire is now averaging 300 new cases per day, up from an average of about 20 in June, and we have seen the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in New Hampshire rise to 125 on August 23, up from a low of 13 in July. Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates, 99 percent of these infections are due to the Delta variant. In addition, nearly 99 percent of those being hospitalized in New Hampshire are individuals who are not fully vaccinated. Looking out one month, modeling suggests that the state of New Hampshire will reach hospitalization levels similar to the peak in January 2021, with similar increases expected in Vermont.”

D-H continues to emphasize that not only are the COVID-19 vaccines safe and highly effective, but that increased vaccination rates are the only way to end the pandemic once and for all. “There is a great deal of fear-based misinformation on the safety of the vaccines and not enough emphasis on science-based evidence of protection the vaccines have offered to the billions of people around the world who have been vaccinated,” Calderwood said. “With the Food and Drug Administration approval of the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine in the process for approval, we hope that will help people decide to get vaccinated.”

About Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health

Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health (D-HH), New Hampshire’s only academic health system and the state’s largest private employer, serves a population of 1.9 million across northern New England. D-HH provides access to more than 2,000 providers in almost every area of medicine, delivering care at its flagship hospital, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) in Lebanon, NH. DHMC was named again in 2020 as the #1 hospital in New Hampshire by U.S. News & World Report, and recognized for high performance in 9 clinical specialties and procedures. Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health includes the Norris Cotton Cancer Center, one of only 51 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the nation Children's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock, the state’s only children’s hospital; member hospitals in Lebanon, Keene, and New London, NH, and Windsor, VT, and Visiting Nurse and Hospice for Vermont and New Hampshire; and 24 Dartmouth-Hitchcock clinics that provide ambulatory services across New Hampshire and Vermont. The D-HH system trains nearly 400 residents and fellows annually, and performs world-class research, in partnership with the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and the White River Junction VA Medical Center in White River Junction, VT.