Delta Variant and breakthrough cases in Alabama

Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 5:20 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Alabama continues to see breakthrough cases of COVID in the state. This is where people are fully vaccinated, but they still get infected.

Alabama health leaders, doctors and infectious disease doctors have all said the same thing. Yes there is a chance you could get infected with COVID or the highly contagious Delta variant, but they said the odds are low and the effects are less severe than if you are not vaccinated.

Governor Kay Ivey invited Alabama State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris to her office to answer questions on social media about the pandemic. This included questions about the breakthrough cases where fully vaccinated people get infected.

“Right now we have about 1.6 million people in the state fully vaccinated and we would not be surprised to see 5-to-10% of those people, which is a lot of people, come down with infection anyway,” Harris said.

But health leaders will tell you the chance of getting infected again remains low and the impact will be less problematic than if you are not vaccinated against the virus. “I just looked at some data on this. Persons who are vaccinated have lower risk of severe disease. Lower risk of hospitalization and less death,” Dr. Karen Landers, ADPH Area Health Officer said.

Doctors said the Delta variant has higher loads of the virus to spread and this makes it more contagious. Vaccinated people can transmit the virus but the vaccines can help protect you by going after the spiked virus proteins.

“The vaccine really targets the spiked protein and targets the part of the virus that is responsible for infecting people,” Landers said.

The CDC recommended people who are vaccinated wear masks indoors at public places to help slow the spread of the Delta variant. In Alabama doctors said there are only about .2% of all fully vaccinated people who are breakthrough cases.

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