PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The number of COVID-19 cases linked to the delta variant in Rhode Island jumped to 581 on Wednesday, according to the Rhode Island Department of Health.

That’s an increase of 163 cases since the Health Department last released delta variant data on Aug. 25.

The confirmed cases are just a sample size, however, with the Health Department sequencing only a portion of new cases each week to screen for the highly contagious variant. Health officials believe the delta is currently the prominent coronavirus strain in the state.

The Health Department also reported an additional 272 positive cases on Wednesday, along with two additional COVID-19-related deaths.

Hospitalizations have been gradually increasing in recent weeks. The data shows 138 patients with COVID-19 were hospitalized as of Wednesday, of which 17 are in the intensive care unit and 14 are on ventilators.

More than 64% of Rhode Island’s population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, a 12 News analysis of CDC and Health Department data shows, while nearly 72% is at least partially vaccinated.