As of July 12, the CDC reported 5,492 breakthrough COVID cases resulting in hospitalization or death. Meanwhile, states continue to report more breakthrough cases, and the New York Yankees cancel series opener after fully vaccinated players test positive.
Reports of COVID breakthrough cases continue to rise — as of July 12, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 5,492 breakthrough cases resulting in death and hospitalization.
A breakthrough case refers to anyone who is diagnosed with COVID after being fully vaccinated. A person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna COVID vaccine, or two weeks after receiving the single-dose Johnson & Johnson(J&J) vaccine.
In May, the CDC revised its system for reporting breakthrough cases, stating it would count only those cases that result in hospitalization or death. Previously, the agency had included in its breakthrough count anyone who tested positive for COVID.
Some states follow the new CDC guidance for counting breakthrough cases. Other states continue to report, at the state level, all cases where an individual tests positive, but may choose to report only hospitalizations and deaths to the CDC.
Illinois, Massachusetts update breakthrough case numbers
According to data updated July 14 by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), 151 people in Illinois have died from COVID or COVID-related complications after being fully vaccinated. At least 563 fully vaccinated people were hospitalized, IDPH said.
Illinois follows CDC guidance, reporting only on breakthrough infections among those who have been hospitalized or died. The state does not publicize the number of residents who tested positive after being fully vaccinated but did not die or require hospitalization in order to “help maximize the quality of the data collected on cases of greatest clinical and public health importance,” IDPH’s website states.
In Massachusetts, public health officials have tracked 4,450 breakthrough cases, WBUR reported. About 92% of those cases did not result in hospitalization, while 303 people, or 6.8%, were hospitalized, according to Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) data through July 10.
Seventy-nine vaccinated residents in Massachusetts died from COVID, either without being hospitalized or following a hospital stay, DPH said.
According to NBC Boston, officials in Provincetown — a tourist destination with one of the highest vaccination rates in the state — sounded the alarm after a handful of new COVID cases “overwhelmingly” affecting fully vaccinated individuals were reported in the community in recent days.
Town Manager Alex Morse said July 13, “Overwhelmingly, the affected individuals have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19. The moderate intensity of symptoms indicates that the vaccines are working as predicted.”
According to the state, there were 34 new COVID cases reported in the county in the past 14 days. Health officials said they are closely monitoring the situation.
Hundreds of fully vaccinated Alaskans got COVID
Despite being fully vaccinated against COVID, more than 656 Alaskans tested positive for the virus between February and June, according to the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.
Of the 656 breakthrough cases, 17 people were hospitalized and two people died with COVID, though health officials noted both had other “substantial comorbidities.”
About 52% of the Alaska breakthrough cases studied occurred among people who showed symptoms of the virus, while 38% were asymptomatic. For the remaining 10%, it was unknown whether they were exhibiting symptoms.
Of the 200 breakthrough cases Alaska health officials analyzed for a possible variant of the virus, 73 involved a variant of concern, including 54 instances of the Alpha variant and 15 of the Delta variant.
A small number of cases among vaccinated people is expected, health officials said.
The state’s new report comes as Alaska faces an increase in COVID cases, with multiple outbreaks drawing attention to more recent vaccine breakthrough cases.
In Sitka, Alaska, 18 out of 60 recent breakthrough cases reportedly involved vaccinated individuals. Two of the three cases identified last week in connection with a Southeast Alaska cruise involved people who were fully vaccinated. The outbreak has now grown to 10 cases.
Foo Fighters cancel concert for ‘vaccinated only’ after vaccinated band member gets COVID
The Foo Fighters’ anticipated return to the stage in Los Angeles was postponed after someone within the organization tested positive for COVID, CNN reported.
On July 14, the band announced via its verified Twitter account: