Early data point to an increase in breakthrough infections in the US

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Since Americans began rolling up their sleeves for coronavirus vaccines, health officials have said the chances of those vaccinated becoming infected or suffering serious illness or death are very low. However, preliminary data from seven states Hint that the arrival of the Delta variant in July may have changed the reckoning.

Breakthrough infections in vaccinated people were responsible for at least one in five newly diagnosed cases in six of these states, and in all percentages of total hospitalizations and deaths, higher than previously observed, according to figures collected by The New York Times.

However, absolute numbers remain very low and there is little doubt that vaccines remain strongly protective. As federal health officials often say, this remains an “unvaccinated epidemic.”

Still, the trend points to a shift in how vaccinated Americans can assess their risk.

Head of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, Dr. “When the first vaccine studies came out, it was like nobody was hospitalized, nobody was dying,” said Robert Wachter. “This is absolutely not true.”

The figures are widely accepted by Biden-led officials, and some Americans take advantage of booster shots in the coming months. Federal officials plan to allow additional shootings by mid-September, although it’s unclear who will receive them.

“If the likelihood of a severe infection has increased significantly, and I think the evidence is clear what they have and the level of protection against serious disease is no longer as robust as it used to be, I think the situation for boosters has increased quite quickly,” said Dr. wachter.

Seven states—California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia—were surveyed for holding the most detailed data. It is not certain whether the trends in these states apply throughout the United States.

In any case, scientists have always hoped that as the population of vaccinated people increases, the seriously ill and dead will be more often represented in their tally.

At Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, infectious disease physician and epidemiologist Dr. “We don’t want to dilute the message that the vaccine is tremendously successful and protective any more than we initially hoped,” said Scott Dryden-Peterson.

“The fact that we’re seeing breakthrough cases, breakthrough hospitalizations and deaths doesn’t lessen the fact that this still saves many people’s lives.”

The CDC declined to comment on the states’ numbers. The agency is expected to discuss breakthrough infections, hospitalizations and vaccine efficacy in a news briefing on Wednesday.

Most analyzes of breakthrough infections include numbers collected. until the end of June. Based on the cumulative figures, the CDC and public health experts concluded that breakthrough infections were extremely rare and people who were vaccinated were not likely to become seriously ill.

State data confirms that vaccinated people are much less likely to become seriously ill or die from Covid-19.

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