Grim milestone: US nears 600,000 killed by COVID-19

Health experts are warning against the highly contagious Delta variant of COVID-19 that was first discovered in India. President Joe Biden urged Americans to get the vaccine.
2:43 | 06/14/21

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Transcript for Grim milestone: US nears 600,000 killed by COVID-19
to the other major news this Monday night. The coronavirus in this country. The new concern tonight about the delta variant, first seen in India. As the U.S. Is set to hit that awful milestone, 600,000 American lives lost to covid. The delta variant, health officials say, is more con stay use and more lethal. The CDC now saying it accounts for nearly 10% of all cases here in the U.S., up more than 60% in just a week. Authorities warning it could become dominant here in the U.S. And it is hitting the unvaccinated very hard. The best protection, they say, getting the vaccine. And the numbers tonight. More than 174 million people have at least one dose of the vaccine. 61% of everyone 12 and older in this country. Also tonight here, the new study on just how effective the vaccines are against this particular variant. Here's Stephanie Ramos. Reporter: Tonight, as the nation nears that grim new milestone, some 600,000 Americans killed by covid, new fears about the highly contagious delta variant, first identified in India. Officials in the uk today delaying reopening plans. The variant now accounting for 90% of all new cases there. Health experts warn it could cause more severe illness and will soon become the dominant strain in the U.S. The delta variant is now about 10% of all the cases in the U.S. If you haven't been vaccinated, when the delta variant comes to your town, it is much more contagious and more lethal. Reporter: Today, president Biden pleading with Americans to get the shot. There's still too many lives being lost. Please, please get vaccinated as soon as possible. We've had enough pain, enough pain. Reporter: While covid cases are declining across the country, five states with vaccination rates below the national average are now seeing increased infections. Front line workers still fighting the virus, with more than 300 Americans on average dying every day. Those deaths are challenging. They could have been prevented with the vaccine. Reporter: In Detroit, Hollie and antwone rivers got covid as they waited for their chance to get vaccinated in April. It just got worse and worse and then -- Reporter: Antwone, a father of five, was admitted to the hospital, passing away one month later in may. He was the kid's super hero. They love him to pieces. Reporter: So many families hurting, David. As for the delta variant, researchers say preliminary data shows that two doses of the covid vaccine work well against the delta variant. The pfizer vaccine, for instance, is said to provide 79% protection. Stephanie Ramos tonight, thank you. We're going to turn now to is the severe storms as we're on

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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