More than 50 walk-in locations
fastmed provider covid-19

At FastMed, your health is our number-one priority. As we keep learning more about COVID-19 and new variants of the virus, you can count on FastMed to provide the information you need to help protect yourself and your family.

The COVID-19 Delta variant is a new, more contagious mutation of the COVID-19 virus, putting unvaccinated people even more at risk. Why do variants happen? What are COVID-19 Delta variant symptoms? How can you tell the difference between COVID-19 variants? If you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.

The down-low on the Delta Variant

After the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, as vaccinations became available worldwide, lockdowns ended. Children went back to school. Adults went back to work. Cases and hospitalizations were on the decline.

The COVID-19 Delta variant could change all that.

Viruses are constantly evolving and changing – a process known as mutation. And the COVID-19 virus is proving to be very good at mutation, with several new variants emerging already.

The Delta variant was first identified in India in late 2020 and quickly swept through that country as well as Great Britain before arriving in the United States. After just a few months, the Delta variant is now the predominant variant of the COVID-19 virus in the United States, accounting for more than 99% of COVID-19 cases.

A highly contagious variant

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirms that the Delta variant causes more infections and spreads faster than any previous form of the COVID-19 virus. In fact, the Delta variant is believed to be at least twice as contagious as any other variant.

Recent studies suggest that people infected by the Delta variant are about twice as likely to be hospitalized as well. The implication is clear: don’t ignore the Delta variant.

Delta Variant in adults vs. Delta Variant in children

While the Delta variant in adults is a major concern, the CDC and other health agencies are worried about the Delta variant in children, teenagers and young adults as well. According to the Yale School of Medicine, less than half of American teenagers were vaccinated as of July 2021. A Pfizer vaccine is now approved for children ages 5-11, with national rollouts anticipated in late 2021, but this process will take time.

Anyone who is unvaccinated, regardless of their age, is at a higher risk of getting COVID-19 – including the Delta variant.

Delta Variant symptoms

How can you tell the difference between COVID-19 variants? Evaluating your symptoms may help.  

Many of the same symptoms remain with the Delta variant, including fever, headache, sore throat and/or runny nose. However, loss of smell seems to be less common with the Delta variant, as well as coughing.

Researchers are still trying to figure out why the Delta variant is so contagious and if it can make you sicker than the original COVID-19 virus. Until we have answers, vaccination is your best protection against the Delta variant.

Schedule your COVID-19 vaccine or test today

The most important thing you can do to protect yourself from the Delta variant or any other form of COVID-19 is to get fully vaccinated. Vaccinated people get COVID-19 less often than unvaccinated people and tend to experience milder symptoms, even as new variants emerge.

A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine are 88% effective against the Delta variant and more than 93% effective against the Alpha variant. And according to the CDC, fully vaccinated people who do experience a breakthrough infection appear to spread the virus for a shorter time – protecting your loved ones and others around you.

FastMed offers COVID-19 vaccines at select clinics, while supplies last. We also offer diagnostic and rapid antibody COVID-19 testing at all locations, while supplies last. Contact us to schedule your appointment today!

About FastMed

FastMed is a leading provider of high-quality, convenient, affordable, and compassionate healthcare in 34 counties across North Carolina. FastMed serves both urban and rural communities across the state with a wide range of care options, including preventive, telemedicine, occupational health, and primary and urgent care. FastMed is one of the few urgent care providers in the nation that has earned The Joint Commission’s coveted Gold Seal of Approval® for quality, safety, and infection control in ambulatory healthcare. For more information, visit

Sign up for email offers

Sign up to receive coupons, health tips, and more–directly to your inbox.