CDC: About 5,800 'breakthrough infections' reported in fully vaccinated people


Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  one month ago  •  18 comments

By:   Erika Edwards

CDC: About 5,800 'breakthrough infections' reported in fully vaccinated people
Can I get Covid-19 after I'm vaccinated? CDC reports some vaccinated people can still be infected with Covid-19. About 5,800 people have 'breakthrough infections'.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is "keeping a close eye" on Covid-19 cases in fully vaccinated people, agency Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Thursday during a hearing before the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis.

On Thursday morning, the CDC said it had reports of approximately 5,800 so-called breakthrough infections, out of the nearly 77 million individuals in the United States who have been fully vaccinated.

Such cases are not unexpected; no vaccine is 100 percent effective against infection with the coronavirus. Even so, they are rare, and experts tell NBC News the data are largely reassuring.

"This is a really good scenario, even with almost 6,000 breakthrough infections," said Tara Smith, a professor of epidemiology at the Kent State University College of Public Health in Ohio. "Most of those have been mildly symptomatic or asymptomatic. That's exactly what we were hoping for."


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In an emailed statement, a CDC spokesperson said the majority of people with breakthrough infections were not hospitalized, and 29 percent had asymptomatic infections.

In addition, 65 percent of the cases were in women, and just over 40 percent were in people ages 60 and up. Seven percent of people were hospitalized, and 74 people died.

The data are not publicly available yet, but the CDC expects to start publishing information on breakthrough infections on its website regularly starting Monday. The agency also plans to collect additional data on the cases, including demographics, vaccine type, variant type, location and the amount of time since the individuals had completed their vaccinations.

"We are reaching out to all of our state health officials, as well as to our hospitals," Walensky said.

Patient demographics that might explain an increased risk for breakthrough infections largely remained unclear Thursday. The CDC declined to provide additional clarity on the cases, including whether the patients had other risk factors, such as compromised immune systems, or whether they continued mitigation measures post-vaccinations, such as wearing masks.

"I would like to know information about their clinical symptoms, whether these people are getting sick from Covid, and whether that's actually the cause of their hospitalization or their death," said Dr. Colleen Kelley, an associate professor of infectious diseases at the Emory University School of Medicine.

It's also unclear why asymptomatic individuals were tested for Covid-19 after being fully vaccinated. It could be that some employers, such as health care systems, require regular testing. What's more, many hospital systems still have a protocol to test for Covid-19 for any hospitalization, such as heart attacks or routine inpatient procedures.

"We've seen a few breakthroughs ourselves," Kelley said. "Oftentimes, they don't have much in the way of symptoms, and are hospitalized for other reasons."

"If you're asymptomatic and you are vaccinated, you would not be likely to be presenting to get tested," said Bill Hanage, an associate professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. As such, the number of breakthrough infections reported to the CDC is "probably an underestimate."

People are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after they receive their second dose of a two-dose vaccine, such as the Pfizer-BioNTech or the Moderna vaccines, or two weeks after a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. (Use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is currently paused in the U.S. as federal health officials investigate cases of rare blood clots linked to the shots.)

In clinical trials, the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines were found to be around 95 percent effective against Covid-19, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was 72 percent effective against moderate-to-severe illness in its U.S. trial.

Still, how well the vaccines work in the real world can differ from the clinical trial results. A CDC study published in March found that the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines were about 90 percent effective against infection, based on real-world data.

Vaccination remains critical to ending the pandemic.

"It's a way of taking the pandemic and transforming it from a terrible, ghastly, unmanageable problem, into a manageable problem," Hanage said.

"It does not reduce the risk to nil, but it does reduce the risk to something that we can handle."


jrDiscussion - desc
Professor Expert
1  Tacos!    one month ago

It’s good to finally hear some data on the vaccinations. They seem to like their numbers, which should be encouraging. It’s a shame there isn’t a little more detail, as mentioned.

PhD Principal
2  JBB    one month ago

This is to be expected as no vaccines are 100% effective...

Buzz of the Orient
Professor Principal
3  Buzz of the Orient    one month ago

It would be good to know the numbers of reinfections per brand of vaccine.  I was surprised to see that there were deaths, but as was said, no vaccine is perfect. 

Professor Expert
3.1  Tacos!  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @3    one month ago
I was surprised to see that there were deaths

So was I - particularly because reporting on testing indicated no deaths from Covid in vaccinated people . From the Moderna testing, for example:

As of Dec. 3, 13 deaths were reported -- six in the vaccine group and seven with placebo. Two deaths in the vaccine group were older than age 75 with pre-existing cardiac disease; one died of cardiopulmonary arrest and one from myocardial infarction. Two patients were found dead at home, one with cardiac disease and one with hypertension and chronic back pain, whose cause of death was listed as head trauma. One patient had Crohn's disease and short bowel syndrome and had complications resulting in multi-organ failure after being hospitalized for obstructive nephrolithiasis and one patient died by suicide.

Of course this article doesn’t say what these people died of. Perhaps that information isn’t available.

MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
Sophomore Principal
4  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)    one month ago

I read about this on Yahoo of all places. The chances of infection following the vaccination is extremely slim and said infection following vaccination, causing death is even slimmer. The stats listed on the Yahoo article were a bit confusing for some, but it boils down to, getting vaccinated is still the best option.

I went to sign myself, my husband, the adopted one, and my daughter up, but there's no where near here with any available [not already slotted for others]. Then again, I'm still working from home, very little interaction with the public. My son is still doing school from home. My husband is still only working with one guy, who also has a family in similar situation as we are [working from home, school from home, etc.] and my daughter, while she's attending school face-to-face, she's very diligent about wearing her mask and eats lunch in a classroom with a favorite teacher, staying away from people as much as possible. So... We'll get our appointments when we get our appointments.

Freshman Quiet
4.1  expatingb  replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @4    one month ago
So... We'll get our appointments when we get our appointments.

True.  You'll get vaccinated all in due time.   You might want to recheck the appointment availability again.   Some people cancel and open slots.  My brother-in-law got his that way.    

MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
Sophomore Principal
4.1.1  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  expatingb @4.1    one month ago

My husband wants us all to get them at the same time. jrSmiley_80_smiley_image.gif

Freshman Quiet
4.1.2  expatingb  replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @4.1.1    one month ago

Yeah, makes sense, especially if the places aren't that convenient.

Remember that dependent on the manufacturer, that 2nd shot can be nasty for some.  I had no problem with either shot at the Embassy (moderna) but my wife had the fever, headaches, and over-all kicked ass feeling for about two days.

And unfortunately for you, those 'side-effects' are more prevalent with women than men, but men do get them also. 

MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
Sophomore Principal
4.1.3  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  expatingb @4.1.2    one month ago

And unfortunately for you, those 'side-effects' are more prevalent with women than men, but men do get them also. 

Yeah, tell me about it. That's all I need... missing a few days of work because I get all the symptoms. Yes, I know the alternative if I got COVID though too.

Junior Participates
4.1.4  Snuffy  replied to  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka) @4.1.3    4 weeks ago
those 'side-effects'

I was highly disappointed with the lack of side effects.  I even took a drive by the local nuke power plant to pick up some extra gamma radiation but didn't grow any wings or claws or anything. Did get excited three days after when I woke up with what I thought were horns growing, but it was just bed head. 

MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)
Sophomore Principal
4.1.5  MsAubrey (aka Ahyoka)  replied to  Snuffy @4.1.4    4 weeks ago


My mom and stepdad called me after they'd gotten their second shots and my mom blurts out, "No lizard tails growing or anything yet!" 

From what I've been reading, it's more common for women to feel sick following the second dose. I've personally known a few.

Sean Treacy
Professor Participates
5  Sean Treacy    one month ago

These are exceptionally good numbers. Beyond any expectation really. 

Professor Expert
6  FLYNAVY1    one month ago

Breakthrough infections in 1 out of every 13,276 people.....  You could ask for more, but I don't see how.   

Professor Principal
7  Tessylo    4 weeks ago

What kills me about all this is my sister is a  nurse, a home health nurse, and she isn't going to get her vaccines.  That boggles my mind.  A nurse.  I didn't say anything, it wasn't worth arguing with her about it.  

And she wants me to travel over 4 hours one way for my niece's baby shower.  So that's 8 hours in the car with someone who refuses to get vaccinated.  I don't want to wear a mask for 8 hours to and from.  Also, she's exposing herself to pregnant women, my one niece, and my other niece who will be at the shower, who is pregnant with twins.  Doesn't sound like such a good idea to me.  

I also thought that people who got vaccinated, if they got Co-Vid, it wouldn't be as severe/you wouldn't need to be hospitalized/you wouldn't necessarily die from it.  I know we still don't know all we need to know about this, but it sounds like it will be quite sometime before we get back to 'normal'.

Professor Expert
7.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Tessylo @7    4 weeks ago

I met a dentist on my flight yesterday that is refusing to take the immunizations..... Guy seemed normal till he started in with that and some of "The Q" theology.

Man... what a cracker!

Professor Principal
7.1.1  Tessylo  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @7.1    4 weeks ago

She's not a supporter of the former occupant of the White House and she's not into that Q bullshit but it's a shame her employer doesn't require it.  

Professor Expert
7.2  Tacos!  replied to  Tessylo @7    4 weeks ago
I also thought that people who got vaccinated, if they got Co-Vid, it wouldn't be as severe/you wouldn't need to be hospitalized/you wouldn't necessarily die from it.

I think that’s still true for 99+% of vaccinated people. It might be 100%.

When they publish a story like this, they are just giving us the totals. I.e. 77 million vaccinated; 74 of them are dead. It doesn’t say what they died of. They could have died of old age, a fall, or a heart attack. Hopefully in the coming days, we will get more details.

"Oftentimes, they don't have much in the way of symptoms, and are hospitalized for other reasons."
Professor Principal
7.2.1  Tessylo  replied to  Tacos! @7.2    4 weeks ago

That makes me feel a lot better.  Thanks!


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