PHOENIX - The Arizona Department of Health is partnering with the Centers for Disease Control and local health departments to investigate 298 confirmed vaccine breakthrough cases in the state.
"We are working to identify patterns or trends in patient characteristics, the administered vaccine, or variant strains," stated AZDHS' Holly Poynter.
AZDHS says no deaths have been reported due to COVID-19 breakthrough infection.
"While no vaccine is 100% effective, we continue to encourage all Arizonans to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccines are a safe and effective public health tool, critical to stopping the spread of illness and preventing severe disease and death from COVID-19," added Poynter.
Arizona COVID-19 "Breakthrough" cases
5,800 people nationwide and nearly 300 people in Arizona have come down with COVID-19 after getting vaccinated -- a reality that doctors say is to be expected.
"If you remember, there was nothing guaranteed that was 100% effective against anything.. it was a culmination, so it is not a surprise that a very small subset of people, even though they have gotten the vaccine and have antibodies can still get exposed and catch the virus," said Ross Goldberg, President of Arizona Medical Association.
Goldberg says that a few of his own patients and colleagues across the country, already vaccinated, have contracted the virus. But those with "breakthrough cases" Goldberg says, have not had any severe symptoms.
"People are not getting hospitalized, nor are they getting really sick and dying, which is what the point of the vaccine was, to provide protections but it’s not gonna be 100%."
So far nationwide, over 66 million people have been vaccinated and less than 1% of those people have been infected afterwards, and Goldberg says that is a good sign that the vaccine is doing its job.
"The big question is, can you transmit it to other people? We're still figuring that out.. starting to look promising, we don’t know yet.. but I want them to not be super worried. Yes, you are always worried when you get something, but the vaccines are helping even if you get exposed, because there is a protective layer given with antibodies you develop from the vaccine."
Goldberg says even if you are vaccinated, he recommends continuing to wear masks, especially for the sake of others who may not be vaccinated around you. Once we reach herdimmunity, he says that will be the time to relax mitigation.
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