Speed Reads

the coronavirus crisis

What other countries' Delta variant data foreshadow for the U.S.

As the Delta coronavirus variant continues to spread across the United States, data from other countries likely provide a glimpse of what to expect in the coming weeks. 

It's becoming clear that cases will climb fairly rapidly again, but there's more uncertainty about the outlook for hospitalizations and deaths. In countries with higher vaccination rates, like the United Kingdom, it appears that deaths are not accelerating as swiftly as infections, even when factoring in delays (since fatalities are always a lagging factor). 

But in countries where vaccines are less accessible, it's a different story.

The United States has done pretty well on the vaccine front overall, but the drive to inoculate the population is disparate, with some cities and states registering higher vaccination rates than others. That means some places in the U.S. could look more like the U.K. — which, it's worth noting, is still experiencing a surge in cases — while others could follow the path of countries with lower vaccination numbers. So it's worth keeping an eye on a variety of situations.