New Jersey reports more COVID-19 breakthrough cases as health officials urge vaccination

There are nearly 1,400 new COVID-19 cases to report today, with the rate of transmission falling to 1.34, and News 12 is learning more of the new positive cases are in people that have already been vaccinated.

News 12 Staff

Aug 10, 2021, 9:43 AM

Updated 988 days ago

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There are nearly 1,400 new COVID-19 cases to report today, with the rate of transmission falling to 1.34, and News 12 is learning more of the new positive cases are in people that have already been vaccinated.
In New Jersey, 18.5% of the positive cases in the last week of July were fully vaccinated people. Health officials continue to stress breakthrough COVID-19 infections can and will happen in people who've been vaccinated, but the majority won't get seriously ill or be hospitalized because the vaccines work.
Cases of the delta variant continue to surge across the country, targeting the unvaccinated population, but as the CDC has warned, breakthrough infections are still possible in people who have been vaccinated.
"With 164 million people who are vaccinated, we should expect tens of thousands, perhaps, of breakthrough infections,” says CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.
Walensky also says vaccinated people who get breakthrough infections can transmit the virus, but they are also infected less frequently and much less severely.
"Those breakthrough infections have mild illness,” says Walensky. “They are staying out of the hospital. They are not dying, and I think that that's the most important thing to understand."
Dr. Lewis Nelson, the chair of emergency medicine at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, agrees with the CDC’s findings, stressing the vaccine does not just protect the person receiving the shot, but can protect people who are unable to be vaccinated – also protecting everyone from potentially worse variants developing.
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"There is a public heath role as well,” says Nelson. “If everyone else around you is vaccinated, your risk of transmitting it is low, and the risk of someone getting it is low.  That means the risk is negligible. If we increase the mutation rate by increasing the infectivity, we do run the risk of developing a variant that completely escapes the current vaccines. That would bring us right back to where we were last March where no one was vaccinated."
The CDC and local health experts recommend everyone, vaccinated or not, wear a mask in public indoor setting, especially if you or a loved one are immunocompromised. They also recommend getting tested after an exposure or experiencing any symptoms.


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