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Vaccines Remain Effective Against Delta

Recent data shows that all three COVID-19 vaccines being administered in the United States are showing high rates of vaccine effectiveness (VE).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released data showing the three vaccines (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Janssen [Johnson & Johnson]) being administered in the United States are demonstrating a high level of VE, especially against severe infection.

“VE of all three authorized COVID-19 vaccines combined remained high against hospitalization (86%) and ED/UC encounters (82%),” The CDC wrote in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

The data comes from reporting done using 32,867 medical encounters in 187 hospitals and 221 emergency departments (ED) and urgent care clinics (UC) in 9 states from June through August. This began on the date the Delta variant accounted for 50% of sequenced isolates in each medical facility’s state.

The study demonstrates the value of vaccination during the Delta surge this summer.

“Among adults with ED/UC encounters for COVID-19–like illness (18,231; median patient age = 43 years, IQR = 29–62 years), laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infections were identified among 28.9% (3,145 of 10,872) of unvaccinated and 7.0% (512 of 7,359) of fully vaccinated patients,” the CDC wrote.

Interestingly, there was some significant statistical differences in the effectiveness of the different vaccines. “VE was highest among Moderna vaccine recipients (92%), followed by Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine recipients (77%), and was lowest (65%) for Janssen vaccine recipients.”

The authors did report 3 limitations in their study, specifically, VE by time since vaccination was not examined; VE for partial vaccination was not assessed; and the findings might not be generalizable to the US population.

“These findings reaffirm the high protection of COVID-19 vaccines against moderate and severe COVID-19 resulting in ED, UC, and hospital visits and underscore the importance of full COVID-19 vaccination and continued benefits of COVID-19 vaccination during Delta variant predominance,” the CDC concluded in its report.