OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The CDC says it has already dealt with an outbreak of the delta variant at an Oklahoma gymnastics facility.
Between May 12 and May 18, the Oklahoma State Department of Health learned of 21 cases of the COVID-19 delta variant that were all connected to a local gymnastics facility.
In all, investigators were able to identify 47 COVID-19 cases linked to the outbreak.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the patients ranged in age from 5-years-old to 58-years-old and were infected between April 15 and May 3.
Officials say there were 23 gymnasts, three staff members, and 21 household contacts that were impacted by the virus. Two of the patients had to be hospitalized, including one in intensive care.
“Forty (85%) persons with outbreak-associated COVID-19 had never received any COVID-19 vaccine doses (unvaccinated); three (6%) had received 1 dose of Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech 14 days before a positive test result but had not received the second dose (partially vaccinated); four persons (9%) had received 2 doses of Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech or a single dose of Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine 14 days before a positive test result (fully vaccinated),” the report states.
As a result, officials say that the delta variant is “highly transmissible in indoor sports settings and within households.”
The report states that there were several limitations to the reporting.
“Other gymnasts and staff members who were exposed to patients from the facility and who might have had asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic infections were not interviewed or tested, which could have led to under ascertainment of cases. Second, the number of cases might be underestimated if cases were not reported to the state surveillance system,” the report states.
Officials say that patients who refused to be interviewed also could have resulted in the underreporting of contacts and patient details.
“These findings suggest that the B.1.617.2 variant is highly transmissible in indoor sports settings and households, which might lead to higher attack rates among exposed persons. Although the actual effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines against the B.1.617.2 variant is not known at this time, current
evidence indicates that vaccines approved under Emergency Use Authorization in the United States are effective against the variant. All eligible persons, including athletes and athletic staff members, should receive COVID-19 vaccination, especially those engaging in strenuous sports with limited ability to
maintain physical distancing (9). In addition, multicomponent prevention strategies (e.g., testing, symptom monitoring, and other setting-specific measures) remain important to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission among persons participating in indoor sports and their contacts,” the report states.
The name of the gymnastics facility was not listed in the report.