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Breakthrough Events, November 22 Update

By November 25, 2021Commentary

Dave is doing a fantastic job of trying to keep up with the data, which usually involves trying to correct and validate it.  The usual table, showing a steady and slightly rising proportion of events in the fully vaxed.  I believe the reason hospitalizations lag as a proportion is that Minnesota has had a steady significant proportion of deaths among the elderly which occur in their residence, usually at a long-term care facility.  These people often have orders precluding intensive treatment, so they are not taken to a hospital.  These are also deaths which are probably wrongly attributed to CV-19.  And as we noted before, if you are concerned about hospital resources, the fully vaxed are using up a fair amount of it.

I will also again point out that this is a serious undercount of breakthrough events.  Minnesota includes partly vaxed people as unvaxed.  They should be broken out.  Minnesota doesn’t count a large number of people who got vaccinated in places they can’t cross-check.  And I will also note the serious confounding by not breaking out of each population those with prior infection.  These persons are likely to have significant adaptive immunity.  So they  limit the infections in the unvaccinated, making that group look better than it is, but they also are a very significant portion of the people who are vaccinated, so does that group have limited infections solely because of the vaccinations or at least partly because of the prior infection?

Let me also note that DOH, in its arrogance, did not update the file of cases by age, so we can’t update the case rate table at this point.  Dave’s notes:

1. The table and chart are updated for new data released by MDH on 11/22/2021, for the week starting 10/17/2021. The source is the data file found on MDH web page Other than adding data for the week of 10/17/2021 there are no changes to data for the prior weeks.

2. The data provided in the data file vbtcounts.xlsx is used without modification, other than to sum the weekly events and compute the breakthrough proportion.

3.  MDH defines a breakthrough event as a Covid case, hospital admission, or death that occurs 14 or more days after completing the vaccination shots (not including boosters).
The data published by MDH in this data file contains cases for those 12 and over only. Including cases for those under 12 would tend to decrease the breakthrough proportions somewhat for cases, but almost not at all for hospital admissions (because there are so few admissions for those under 12), and even less for deaths.

Join the discussion 3 Comments

  • Don says:

    “Breakthrough” is a term we accept, but it’s no longer uncommon. It’s definitely not rare. There’s nothing special about this anymore. It’s time for a new word!

  • Don says:

    Happy Thanksgiving! I truly appreciate you and Dave for doing this work! This matters!

  • quentin49 says:

    Has the state provided any data on the number of people who have had COVID and recovered who have been reinfected with the new variant? If I read this correctly the current data includes vaccinated only in the re-infections.

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