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COVID-19 cases may have hit their peak. Is this the end of the delta variant?

The 7-day average for COVID-19 is down. Does this mean the delta variant is disappearing?

A line of vehicles at a COVID-19 testing site.
A line of vehicles wraps around a parking lot and out to the street at a COVID-19 testing site outside of the Mount Olympus Senior Center in Millcreek on Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021 People waited approximately two hours to get tested.
Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

COVID-19 case numbers might be on the decline, even though numbers still remain high overall. But that could be a sign that the pandemic — specifically the delta variant wave — might be on the way down.

What are new COVID-19 case numbers?

New numbers from Johns Hopkins University found that the seven-day average for COVID-19 cases is about 144,300 on Sept. 12. That’s a 12% dip from the previous week and a 14% dip since Sept. 1.

  • “This is good news,” said Dr. Arturo Casadevall, chair of molecular microbiology and immunology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, according to CNBC. “It could represent that we have reached a peak and we are now on the way down.”

Is the delta variant peaked?

Casadevall said the high number of cases this summer, as well as the vaccinations, may be helping the U.S. fight off the delta variant.

  • “Every epidemic goes through cycles and eventually wanes, and that happens when you have enough people who are resistant,” Casadevall said, according to CNBC.

But Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former Food and Drug Administration commissioner, said Labor Day would signal the beginning of a new delta variant wave. He said states with low COVID-19 case numbers right now — like the Northeast — might see a spike, kicking off the “true delta wave” as I wrote for the Deseret News.

  • “I don’t think that that was the true delta wave. I think that that was a delta warning. I think our true delta wave is going to start to build after Labor Day here in the Northeast and the northern part of the country,” Gottlieb said.