A fully vaccinated man, Patricio Elizondo, died of COVID-19 on Tuesday, August 10. He was survived by his daughter, Yvonne Rodriguez, who said that she saw her father for the last time at the hospital, struggling to breathe on his own.
When she saw an X-ray of her father’s chest, it was explained that he contracted COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated. She initially thought that her father was experiencing a flare-up of congestive heart failure or recurring infection. Elizondo had heart problems and diabetes, making him susceptible to developing severe COVID-19.
Elizondo mostly stayed indoors and wore his mask as an act of caution, Rodriguez said, so they didn’t know where he got the virus that damaged his lungs. (Related: The fully vaccinated are getting infected again, demonstrating yet again that vaccines don’t really work as promised.)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) insisted that there is some evidence that vaccination may make the illness less severe for those who are vaccinated and still get sick. The CDC also said that there are no vaccines that provide 100 percent protection against the virus, saying that “there will be a small percentage of fully vaccinated people who still get sick, are hospitalized, or die from COVID-19.”
There is still a large number of unvaccinated people in the United States. According to the CDC data, only 50.3 percent of people in the U.S. have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of August 10.
What are breakthrough infections?
In recent weeks, the U.S. has seen a rise in coronavirus infections among vaccinated individuals. However, health officials still insist there is little to worry about these breakthrough infections.
As the pandemic continues and more transmissible variants of the virus circulate, it is expected that the number of breakthrough infections will rise as well.
Angela Rasmussen, a virologist with the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada said, “The reality is that a lot of these breakthrough infections have been vaccinated people who test positive.”
Dr. Robert Darnell, a senior physician and biochemist at Rockefeller University in New York, said: “If you have a lot of good antibodies, they are potentially able to bind to the virus before it can cause trouble, and that can mitigate or decrease your odds of getting sick.”
Breakthrough infections are expected because no vaccine is fully effective, and there are cases where vaccinated people can get seriously ill and die from COVID-19.
Dr. Sarah Fortune, an immunologist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health said that this is because the vaccines act like screens to block most, but not necessarily all, virus particles invading the body. Different factors also influence the strength of the vaccine and how many virus particles can make it through the barriers, indicating that vaccines are not always effective when it comes to preventing diseases.
Read more updates regarding the rise in COVID-19 cases at Pandemic.news.