Here’s how much higher your risk of death from COVID-19 is if you’re not vaccinated: CDC
New U.S. studies released Friday show COVID-19 vaccines remain highly effective against hospitalizations and deaths even as the extra-contagious delta variant swept the country.
A study followed more than 600,000 cases of COVID-19 in 13 states from April to mid-July. As the delta increased in early summer, those who weren’t vaccinated were 4.5 times more likely than fully vaccinated people to be infected, more than 10 times more likely to be hospitalized, and 11 times more likely. likely to die, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Vaccination works,” CDC director Dr Rochelle Walensky said in a White House briefing on Friday. “The bottom line is this: we have the scientific tools we need to turn around this pandemic. “
But as previous data has shown, protection against coronavirus infection is slipping a bit: it was 91% in the spring but 78% in June and July, according to the study.
The so-called “revolutionary” cases in fully vaccinated people accounted for 14% of hospitalizations and 16% of deaths in June and July, about double the percentage recorded earlier in the year.
An increase in these percentages is not surprising: No one has ever said vaccines are perfect, and health experts have warned that as more Americans get vaccinated, they will naturally represent a larger fraction of cases.
Walensky said on Friday that well over 90% of people hospitalized in the United States with COVID-19 are not vaccinated.
The CDC released two more studies on Friday that reported decreasing protection indices for the elderly. One looked at hospitalizations related to COVID-19 in nine states over the summer and found that protection for those 75 and over was 76% versus 89% for all other adults. And in five veterans’ medical centers, protection against COVID-19-related hospitalizations was 95% among those aged 18 to 64, compared to 80% among those 65 and older.
It is not clear whether the changes seen over time are due to the fact that immunity wanes in people vaccinated for the first time several months ago, that the vaccine is not as potent against delta – or that much of the country has abandoned masks and other precautions just as Delta has started to spread.
But U.S. health officials will take this latest real-world data into account when deciding whether at least some Americans need a booster and how long after their last dose. Next week, Food and Drug Administration advisers will publicly debate Pfizer’s request for a third shot.