Public health officials to start publicly tracking cases post-vaccination

The CDC has received reports of approximately 5,800 breakthrough Covid-19 infections among the nearly 77 million individuals in the U.S. who have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus—a number that represents less than 1% of these individuals, according to CNN.

In all, 65% of these breakthrough cases were in women, and a little over 40% were in those ages 60 years and older. Only 7% of patients with breakthrough infections were hospitalized, and 74 people died. In all, 29% had asymptomatic infection.

Breakthrough cases after full vaccination for Covid-19 are rare, but not surprising, as none of the currently available vaccines are 100% effective against infection. Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were reported by the CDC to have 90% efficacy against Covid-19, while the Johnson & Johnson was found to be 74.4% effective against moderate-to-severe disease among patients in the U.S.

During a White House briefing on April 9, Anthony Fauci, MD, of the National Institutes of Health, said that breakthrough cases are rare.

“There’s nothing there yet that’s a red flag. We obviously are going to keep an eye on that very, very carefully. But I don’t see anything that changes our concept of the vaccine and its efficacy,” he said.

While these data have not been made publicly available, the CDC announced that it expects to start publishing information on breakthrough infections on its website regularly, starting Monday, April 19. Additional demographic data, as well as vaccine type, variant type, location, and the amount of time since individuals were completely immunized, will also be tracked.

“CDC has developed a national Covid-19 vaccine breakthrough database where state health department investigators can currently enter, store, and manage data for cases in their jurisdiction,” the CDC told CNN.

The CDC hopes to learn, from further analysis of patient demographics, the risk factors that may explain what causes increased risk for breakthrough infections. Whether these patients were immunocompromised or discontinued mitigation efforts after vaccination, for example, may play a role in putting them at increased risk.

“Vaccine breakthrough infections make up a small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated. CDC recommends that all eligible people get a Covid-19 vaccine as soon as one is available to them. CDC also continues to recommend people who have been fully vaccinated should keep taking precautions in public places, like wearing a mask, staying at least six feet apart from others, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, and washing their hands often,” the CDC concluded.

Liz Meszaros, Deputy Managing Editor, BreakingMED™

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Topic ID: 79,125,730,933,125,190,31,520,926,192,561,927,925,934