KEY POINTS

  • 43 people have died of COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated 
  • About 13 breakthrough cases have been reported in Texas in  May
  • Experts advise the public to wear masks despite being fully vaccinated

About 43 fully vaccinated people from Texas have died of COVID-19, according to the state's Department of State Health Services (DSHS).

Between the dates Feb. 8 and July 14 of this year, the health department reported that 43 people who contracted the coronavirus have died despite being fully vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2.

DSHS revealed that nearly 75% of the 43 patients had serious underlying health conditions including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, chronic lung disease, autoimmune disease and COPD. The department also went on to say that majority of them were white men. In addition, more than 95% of the breakthrough cases consisted of men who were 60 years and older, KXAN News reported.

Breakthrough cases are instances when a person who has been inoculated against the coronavirus still contracts the disease. According to the news outlet, the month of May had the most number of breakthrough cases reported in the state, amounting to 13 people who still contracted the virus despite having been vaccinated.

As the world continues to grapple with putting an end to the COVID-19 pandemic, experts are now advising the public to still practice precaution even after they have gotten vaccinated. This is because more and more breakthrough cases are being reported across the United States every day, prompting health officials to encourage people to wear face masks again.

Despite the breakthrough cases, however, doctors continue to campaign for people to get inoculated as this will lower their risk of getting hospitalized and developing severe symptoms when they contract COVID-19.

"The vaccines were designed to keep us out of the hospital and to keep us from dying. That was the whole purpose of the vaccine and they're even more successful than we anticipated," William Schaffner, MD, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, told WebMD.

Schaffner added that people should adopt the "belt-and-suspenders approach" to further lower the chances of getting the virus. In other words, individuals should adopt all the practices that they can to stay safe.

"Get vaccinated for sure, but since we can't be absolutely certain that the vaccines are going to be optimally protective and you are particularly susceptible to serious disease, you would be well advised to adopt at least one and perhaps more of the other mitigation measures," Schaffner stated.

Mexico is in the midst of a third wave of Covid-19 infections with unvaccinated younger people bearing the brunt Mexico is in the midst of a third wave of Covid-19 infections with unvaccinated younger people bearing the brunt Photo: AFP / ALFREDO ESTRELLA