• Authorities also reported 10,471 breakthrough hospitalizations as of Aug. 30
  • An expert estimates officials record 35,000 breakthrough cases every week
  • A study showed unvaccinated Americans are 17 times more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19

More than 2,000 Americans who were fully vaccinated against COVID-19 have died of the virus, data shows.

At least 2,437 fully vaccinated people across the United States have died of COVID-19, as of Aug. 30. Among the total number of breakthrough deaths, 87% were people aged 65 and older and 44% were females, a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed.

During the same period, authorities from across the country also reported 10,471 breakthrough hospitalizations. At least 70% or 7,282 of hospitalizations among the fully vaccinated were people aged 65 and older, while 48% or 5,059 are females. Only 2,409 of the cases were patients who showed no symptoms or their hospitalizations were not COVID-19 related.

Breakthrough COVID-19 cases are on the rise across the U.S. These cases occur when a person who has been fully vaccinated becomes infected with the novel coronavirus. An expert estimates that the U.S. is likely to be reporting 35,000 breakthrough cases every week.

“While that number on its own seems quite large, we have to put it in proportion to the 173 million individuals in the United States who have been vaccinated as of August 30," Dr. Shalika Katugaha, System Medical Director of Infectious Diseases at Baptist Health, told First Coast News.

However, Katugaha warned that the number may be an underestimate, noting that some people may not be reporting COVID-19 cases.

“It could just be that you went to get tested before a flight or before an event, and you just tested positive, and so those people wouldn't necessarily report it," she added.

Despite the rise in breakthrough cases and hospitalizations, experts still urge Americans to get vaccinated. According to a preprint study published on MedRxiv on Aug. 29, people who are unvaccinated are 17 times more likely to be hospitalized.

The study also found that unvaccinated patients who tested positive for COVID-19 and were admitted to a hospital had a median age of 59. In comparison, vaccinated adults with breakthrough hospitalizations had a median age of 73.

"The vaccines are intended to save lives, and that's why I'm so passionate about them,” Katugaha said. “They are preventing hospitalization, they are preventing death. They are preventing severe illness.”

Representation. Kevin McKenzie, 33, urged people on Facebook to get vaccinated, all while he was fighting COVID-19 at the hospital. Pixabay

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