The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the agency has documented about 5,800 “breakthrough” COVID-19 cases among the millions of Americans who are fully vaccinated, totaling far less than 1 percent of fully vaccinated people.
"Vaccine breakthrough infections make up a small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated,” the CDC told The Hill in a statement. “CDC recommends that all eligible people get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as one is available to them.”
The CDC told The Hill on Thursday that about 7 percent of the recorded breakthrough cases resulted in hospitalization and about 1 percent of the people who contracted breakthrough infections died.
The breakthrough COVID-19 infections reported to the CDC were out of more than 75 million fully vaccinated individuals in the U.S., occurring in less than 0.008 percent of fully vaccinated people. Hospitalizations have occurred in 0.0005 percent of all full vaccinations and deaths in almost 0.0001 percent.
Health officials, including top infectious disease expert Anthony FauciAnthony FauciIntercept reporters discuss gain-of-function research The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - DC prepares for Saturday of festivals & Jan. 6 demonstration United Airlines CEO says employees exempt from vaccine 'won't be in front of customers' MORE, have pointed out that COVID-19 vaccines will not be 100 percent effective, meaning that some who are vaccinated will still become infected.
"To date, no unexpected patterns have been identified in case demographics or vaccine characteristics," the CDC said.
The health agency called on all eligible people to get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible and on fully vaccinated individuals to keep up coronavirus precautions, such as wearing a mask and social distancing, to avoid contracting the disease.
The CDC said COVID-19 breakthrough cases were reported among “all people of all ages eligible for vaccination.”
Most of the breakthrough infections occurred among women, and slightly more than 40 percent took place among those 60 or older. Almost 30 percent of the breakthrough cases among fully vaccinated people were asymptomatic, the CDC reported.
"CDC is monitoring reported cases for clustering by patient demographics, geographic location, time since vaccination, vaccine type or lot number, and SARS-CoV-2 lineage," the agency said.
The federal agency has also developed a database for state health officials to enter and organize data on these breakthrough cases. "When available," the CDC said, samples will be collected for genomic sequencing to find out if certain variants caused the infection.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine reported being 95 percent effective against symptomatic cases in trials and overall 91 percent effective against any symptoms, and the Moderna vaccine documented 94 percent effectiveness against symptomatic cases in trials and 90 percent effectiveness overall six months after the second dose.