Addressing parent’s concerns about the Delta variant: A word from Cleo’s Clinical Team

For parents especially, the Delta variant is raising new concerns and questions about how to keep their kids safe. The Cleo Clinical team is keeping parents and their employers up to date with new data and recommendations. We’ll continue to update this space as the data evolves.

We know the Delta variant is on the minds of our Cleo families. It’s a daily topic of conversation in our work and home lives, too.

First, the facts: The Delta variant is more transmissible than previous variants of COVID-19, and therefore it is affecting anyone who is unvaccinated, including children, at a higher rate.

About 1 in 7 new cases is occurring among children as of data available on August 5, 2021. This is because children are a large proportion of the unvaccinated.

We do not have any data to conclude that the Delta variant results in more severe outcomes for children than other variants. Reassuringly, hospitalizations for children are low and deaths are rare.

The good news is that vaccinating those 12 years and older and taking safety measures can help prevent young children from being exposed to and getting sick from COVID-19:

  • Encourage the adults and eligible children in your life to get vaccinated if they haven’t already. This is the best way to prevent serious illness and hospitalization due to COVID-19. The CDC just announced new data showing that the vaccine is safe for pregnant people, too.
  • Check in with your child’s healthcare provider to assess your child’s risk. Ensure everyone in your family is up-to-date on routine care, which includes their immunization schedule. You should also receive seasonal vaccines when they’re available, like those for influenza in the fall.
  • Continue to take recommended safety precautions. These may include wearing a face mask, practicing hand hygiene, physical distancing of 6 feet or more from others where possible, and staying home when sick.

If you’re wondering whether your child is safe at school or daycare, or whether it’s safe to travel, or whether you should adjust your family’s plan, you’re not alone.

These decisions depend on a number of factors, such as your family’s overall health, vaccination status, the level of COVID-19 outbreaks in your area, and weighing other needs such as academic learning and social connection.

For example, you may time a family gathering for a week after any travel rather than the day you get home, so you can monitor for symptoms. Or if virtual school or activities were working for you and your children, you may consider re-introducing them.

It’s important to focus on what you can control and make the decisions that are best for your family. Cleo is here to help you reflect, digest, and express what matters most to you.

Stephanie Long, MD, FAAFP, Director of Clinical Operations at Cleo


You can make adjustments in your lifestyle, adjust childcare options, and consult your healthcare provider as the pandemic progresses. Remember that you can always renegotiate what you’re comfortable with, too.

Finally, reach out to your Cleo Guide for mental health support and to help process these decisions, or even on ways to talk about this with your children. As information evolves and we process the changing headlines, your emotional wellness is essential to making the best decisions to help your family stay healthy.
We’re here for you.

Stephanie Long, MD, FAAFP, Director of Clinical Operations at Cleo
Chitra Akileswaran, MD, Chief Medical Officer at Cleo


Note: This content has been reviewed by Dr. Stephanie Long, Cleo’s Director of Clinical Operations. Cleo aims to give the most accurate information, but details and recommendations about the pandemic may have changed since this piece was published. For the latest information, please check out resources from the World Health Organization, U.S. Centers for Disease Control, and local public health departments.