By Bobeth Yates

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – COVID hospitalization numbers continue to rise in Miami-Dade and across the state.

Hospitalization rates are reaching numbers close to what they were last year at this time.

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“It’s spreading like wildfire,” said David Andrews, vice-chair of patient pathology at Jackson Health System.

As of July 30th, Miami-Dade County had 542,000 Covid cases. That is a 19.5 percent increase from the week before.

Baptist Health hospitals are seeing a large number of those people and is currently caring for 726 patients with COVID-19 at their hospitals. That’s a 140 percent increase from two weeks ago.

Andrews says similar increases can be seen all across the state.

“The Delta variant is an unprecedented variant since the pandemic began,” adds Andrews.

Jackson Health System currently has 238 COVID patients, 99 more than two weeks ago. Twenty-nine of them are in the ICU, which is almost at capacity and even though both the vaccinated and unvaccinated are getting the virus at the same rate, Andrews says the unvaccinated are the ones who wind up in the hospital.

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“The unvaccinated population. Those individuals are going to be much more susceptible to getting very sick and becoming hospitalized and ultimately succumbing to this disease,” said Andrews.

But in a recent briefing, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried said there is a silver lining.

“Florida is seeing an increase in vaccines administered. This past week, 334,064 doses to 288,870 the week before. This is a positive trend”

“We have seen a 30% increase in vaccinations.”

Tourist Delfina Bejir decided to get vaccinated while on vacation

“In my country, people my age are not getting vaccinated right now and I know that here I know that they are vaccinating everyone, so decided to get the vaccine here,” said Bejir.

Even those who are vaccinated say they are taking precautions.

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“I want them to be protected. I want them to be safe no matter what side of the fence you stand on, but as far as vaccines go I think just wearing a mask is the answer right now,” said Belaxis Buil.