Infection and hospitalization rates in late July were five and 29 times higher, respectively, among unvaccinated people in Los Angeles County than the fully vaccinated, according to a new report out Tuesday from the CDC.
Why it matters: Hospitals and state health officials have been warning that the spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations is mostly attributed to unvaccinated adults.
The big picture: Still, the data, which shows one-fourth of Los Angeles infections were among the vaccinated, coincides with another CDC report out Tuesday that also shows the waning vaccine effectiveness against the Delta variant.
- The CDC looked at a cohort of front-line health care workers and determined that vaccine effectiveness had gone down to 66%, independent of time since vaccination.
- Last week, the agency released initial reports on vaccine effectiveness including one on adults in New York with vaccine effectiveness declining from about 92% in early May to nearly 80% by late July.
Between the lines: The two datasets out Tuesday add to the emerging evidence that protection from COVID-19 shots decreases over time.
By the numbers: Among the 43,127 COVID infections in Los Angeles County, between May 1 and July 25, about 25% were fully vaccinated, about 3% were partially vaccinated and about 71% were unvaccinated, the report shows.
Fully vaccinated people with COVID-19 were also less likely to be hospitalized than unvaccinated people.
- About 3% of vaccinated people were hospitalized, .5% were in an ICU and .2% needed a ventilator.
- Among the unvaccinated, nearly 8% were hospitalized, 1.5% were in an ICU and .5% were on a ventilator.
The bottom line: The vaccine still protects the majority of people from severe illness, and breakthrough cases among the vaccinated are still rare.