CDC: Unvaccinated 11 times more likely to die from COVID-19

The CDC is hammering the message: COVID-19 vaccines work.

A new CDC study found unvaccinated individuals were 11 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than fully vaccinated people.

The research, spanning more than 600,000 people in 13 jurisdictions, also determined that unvaccinated populations were over 10 times more likely to be hospitalized — figures that underscore COVID-19 vaccines protect recipients from deaths and hospitalizations.

The study also showed that unvaccinated people were 4.5 times more likely to contract COVID-19 than the fully vaccinated.

Message: The study aligns with the Biden administration’s message that vaccines are the best way to combat the pandemic.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky on Friday made the case for vaccines yet again, stating that COVID-19 shots still work to protect recipients from the worst of the disease amid the rampant spread of the delta variant.

“The bottom line is this: We have the scientific tools we need to turn the corner on this pandemic,” Walensky said. “Vaccination works and will protect us from the severe complications of COVID-19.

Waning effectiveness for older population: However, two other studies also provided some evidence that the effectiveness of the vaccines are starting to wane among the older population, prompting the researchers to call for further investigation.

One study involving patients across nine states, the effectiveness for those aged 75 and older was 76 percent, while among those aged 18 to 74, effectiveness reached 89 percent.

But researchers urged caution, saying in the study that “this moderate decline should be interpreted with caution and might be related to changes in SARS-CoV-2, waning of vaccine-induced immunity with increased time since vaccination, or a combination of factors.”

Muddying future: If the CDC wanted a clear indicator that booster doses are needed, these studies did not do that.