We always knew the vaccines to combat COVID-19 weren't 100% effective against getting the disease caused by the coronavirus, and that the role of the vaccine is mainly to prevent hospitalization and death. That appears to be how it's working.
According to the Ohio Department of Health's Breakthrough COVID-19 dashboard, the amount of hospitalizations since January 2021 have been only 407 for those who have been fully vaccinated, compared to almost 20,000 for people who are unvaccinated. Similarly, there have only been 71 deaths attributed to COVID-19 since January, compared to almost 7,000 deaths for those unvaccinated. To put that another way, that's about 2 percent of hospitalizations and 1 percent of deaths in the state are attributed to breakthrough cases of COVID-19.
But there has been a recent rise in breakthrough cases across the country, defined as people contracting the virus after being fuilly vaccinated. The U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy said last week that this is likely due to the strength of the widespread Delta variant and that, "...protection against mild and moderate disease has decreased over time."
This hour, we'll start by talking to a infectious diseases specialist about the rise in breakthrough cases. And, we'll get a first-hand account of a breakthrough case, by talking to one of our colleagues who has been documenting his own and his family's recovery from breakthrough cases on social media, Andy Chow, reporter with the Ohio Public Radio Statehouse News Bureau.
Later, we'll hear a story about a pioneering female band leader in the state, and we'll meet the next Anisfield-Wolf Book Award winner. And, we'll preview the 75th annual One World Day Festival.
-Andy Chow, Reporter, Ohio Public Radio Statehouse News Bureau
-Dr. Amy Ray, MD, Infectious Diseases Specialist & Medical Director of Infection Prevention and Regulatory Affairs, MetroHealth
-Laverne Clouden, Retired Educator
-Rutger Bruning, Founder, StoryTerrace
-James McBride, Author, Deacon King Kong
-Mike McIntyre, Executive Editor, Ideastream Public Media
-Lori Ashyk, Executive Director, Cleveland Cultural Gardens Federation