CDC Director: Unvaccinated '11 Times More Likely To Die' From Delta

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In a White House press briefing, CDC director Rochelle Walensky said unvaccinated folks are 11 times more likely to die from the Delta variant

Hey there. It’s us again, on our COVID soapbox, begging and pleading with you to get vaccinated if you’re eligible and have not yet done so. Hospitals and health care centers across the country are hitting max capacity, with people fighting for their lives in ICU beds not due to adverse vaccine reactions but from being unvaccinated — a fate that is not only grim, but almost entirely preventable by simply getting the vaccine.

Don’t believe us? Alrighty. Perhaps a staggering new truth bomb dropped by Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), who just shared that unvaccinated individuals are “10 times more likely to be hospitalized and 11 times more likely to die” from the highly transmissible Delta variant. They’re also 4.5 times more likely to be infected in the first place, which isn’t surprising given that we know fully vaccinated people can still contract the virus.

Walensky shared the new CDC data during today’s White House press briefing, citing three new studies published that looked at more than 600,000 people across 13 states, determining that hospitalization rates for fully vaccinated individuals remain low — despite Delta being more highly infectious than previous strains of the virus.

The first study was conducted between April and July, as the Delta variant began spreading rapidly in the U.S. During that time frame, 92 percent of COVID hospitalizations and 91 percent of deaths were people who were not fully vaccinated, indicating that being vaccinated still provides a solid level of protection from serious illness, hospitalization, or death.

A second study looked at all three currently available vaccines in the U.S. (Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech, and Johnson & Johnson), finding that overall prevention from being infected dropped from 91 percent to 78 percent, with that gap increasing for Americans above the age of 66.

Further making the case for snagging a booster shot when it becomes available to you, Walensky cited a subsequent study — this one looked at data from 33,000 patient encounters at 187 hospitals and 221 emergency departments/urgent care clinics across nine states between June and August, finding that the Moderna vaccine was slightly more effective at preventing serious illness than its Pfizer and J&J counterparts. Still worth noting: All three vaccines are extraordinarily helpful when it comes to preventing serious illness and death from this unpredictable and terrifying virus.

The TL:DR, per Walensky: “As we have shown study after study, vaccination works. The CDC will continue to do all we can do to increase vaccination rates across the country by working with local communities and trusted messengers and providing vaccine confidence consults to make sure that people have the information they need to make an informed decision.”