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Data Show Effectiveness of Vaccines

CDC says numbers demonstrate full doses prevent serious illnesses
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 1, 2021 9:00 AM CDT
Data Show Effectiveness of Vaccines
Nurses and doctors in the CoxHealth Emergency Department in Springfield, Mo., wear personal protective equipment to treat patients with COVID-19 in July. Cases and vaccinations are up in Missouri.   (Nathan Papes/The Springfield News-Leader via AP)

(Newser) – Fully vaccinated people can catch the coronavirus, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been saying all along that the COVID-19 vaccines prevent deaths among those patients. The CDC now has released data to back that up, showing that fewer than 0.001% of fully vaccinated people die of COVID-19. And not 0.004% of fully vaccinated people who are infected need hospitalization, CNN reports. As of July 26, when 163 million people in the US were fully vaccinated, the CDC totals for breakthrough cases show:

  • 6,587 infections.
  • 6,239 hospitalizations.
  • 1,263 deaths.
  • About three-fourths of the cases are among patients 65 and older.

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Most new cases reported across the country are among the unvaccinated. Or, put another way by a health spokesman for one state, per NBC: "99.9 percent of Minnesotans who are fully vaccinated have not contracted the virus." Still, the CDC wants everyone to mask up, after earlier relaxing its recommendations. That's partly because of the realizations that even fully vaccinated people are spreading the troublesome delta variant. The CDC cautions that it relies on voluntary reporting by local governments, so the numbers aren't complete; the agency calls them a snapshot. The CDC uses the data to spot patterns, and it says it's seen nothing unexpected in the breakthrough cases so far. As the delta variant receives attention, the CDC says vaccinations are up 26% nationally in the past three weeks. (Read more coronavirus vaccine stories.)

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