ORLANDO, Floride – They are called COVID-19 breakthrough cases: people who have been fully vaccinated but still contract the virus more than 14 days after their second injection.
The cases are cropping up across the country, including central Florida, News4Jax’s sister station WKMG-TV reported.
Earlier this month, the Minnesota Department of Health issued a health notice stating that with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it was investigating COVID-19 infections in “properly vaccinated” people, also called vaccine breakthrough cases, according to the advisory.
WKMG has checked and the Florida Department of Health in Volusia County has six documented breakthrough cases, while Sumter County has six and Lake County has 26, according to emails from each spokesperson. county.
News4Jax asked all county health departments in the Jacksonville area if there had been any breakthrough cases, but did not get a response on Tuesday afternoon.
Hanna Rewerts, 27, is a physiotherapist and has been tested for COVID-19 at least once a week since the start of the pandemic.
She says she had her first positive test just a few days ago.
“I was shocked, you know,” Rewerts said. “Immediately I was like, ‘This must be a false positive. It cannot be fair. “
But several tests have confirmed it.
She said she was shocked because she was also fully vaccinated.
As a health worker, Rewerts received his first dose of Pfizer vaccine in December 2020, according to his vaccine card. Her second dose took place three weeks later in January.
More than two months after the second stroke, she contracted the virus.
“So it’s fair, it’s very strange,” Rewerts said.
Dr Timothy Hendrix works for Advent Health and has said that it is possible for a fully vaccinated person to contract the virus.
“It’s possible because no vaccine is perfect,” said Hendrix.
Hendrix pointed out that the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are 95% effective, however.
“The good news is that for this very small number of people who could be infected, that less than 5%, the chances of serious illness are almost nil,” said Hendrix.
Dr Sunil Joshi, president of the Duval County Medical Foundation, compared the COVID-19 vaccine to the flu vaccine.
“It’s like the flu shot, for example, isn’t it. We know we encourage people to get the flu shot. That doesn’t mean you won’t get the flu. But the disease has diminished considerably, ”said Joshi. “So remember, this all from the very beginning has been to prevent people from entering the hospital. And so, anything that is positive after the vaccine is not unusual, it can happen.
Groundbreaking cases are not specific to COVID-19 and can occur with any vaccine, experts say.
Rewerts said three members of her family who were also fully vaccinated also contracted it.
“A member of my family went to the hospital,” Rewerts said. “I mean, it’s serious enough to be concerned about the vaccine. “
Rewerts said the Florida Department of Health was performing tests to see if she may have been infected with one of the COVID-19 variants that made it to Florida.
She said that for now, she and her family will continue to distance themselves socially and wear masks.
“I don’t think the public is aware that it doesn’t mean you don’t get the virus, and it doesn’t mean you don’t get sick. There is still a chance, ”said Rewerts.
Joshi said vaccines were effective in preventing serious illness at over 90% for Moderna and Pfizer and over 86% for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
“By doing this, we are assuming extrapolating that it means that it is also helpful to prevent the spread of the virus,” Joshi said. “But you really have to look at longer-term studies to see how useful it is to prevent that. “
Researchers are still trying to determine whether people who are fully vaccinated and contract the virus can also pass it on to other people, which is why they recommend continuing to wear masks even after being vaccinated.
Copyright 2021 by WKMG-TV / Orlando – All rights reserved.