RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – The highly contagious Delta variant is now the most dominant COVID-19 strain in the United States, but some health experts warn it could be harder to diagnose.

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Dr. David Priest, an infectious disease specialist with Novant Health, said many who are sick with the Delta variant are presenting more vague symptoms, like a sore throat or runny nose.

That could prove to be difficult as other respiratory viruses, like Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), spike and when the cold and flu join the mix in the fall.

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Experts are urging anyone who has any of the COVID-19 symptoms to get tested, even if they feel like it’s the common cold.

All three COVID-19 vaccines appear to stand up to the variant, but experts say the chance of getting the virus is much lower in someone who is fully vaccinated than in someone who is not.

In Central Virginia, there are a number of options for COVID-19 testing:

  • Search for locations near you here.
  • Contact your local health department.
  • Call ahead to your local pharmacy, healthcare provider or insurance company for information.