TAMPA, Fla. – Dr. Robin Hauser has worked hard as a pediatrician to take all precautions. But when COVID-19 hit her home, she said the virus had infected her too.
Hauser said she was fully vaccinated at the time, making her case a breakthrough.
“I didn’t get very sick. I was not hospitalized, but I say, although you shouldn’t go into quarantine after an exposure if you’ve been vaccinated, you really need to check yourself and if you feel like you are sick , you should test because it is still possible that you have COVID, ”she said.
The CDC reports that of the more than 75 million fully vaccinated people, about 5,800 reports of breakthrough infections, 29 percent of which were asymptomatic.
“Although this number comes from 43 states and territories and is probably an underestimate, it is still a very important point. These vaccines work, ”said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the CDC, at a press conference.
Some health experts said the numbers show vaccinations are effective.
“This basically shows you that the vaccine efficacy at 90 plus percent is really that number, because we hardly see any breakthrough infections,” said Michael Teng, Ph.D., associate professor of medicine at USF Health.
More studies are looking at cases like these.
A recent study from The Rockefeller University published in The New England Journal of Medicine found that 2 of the 417 people it studied had a breakthrough infection. Researchers found multiple mutations in both viral samples.
Another study published in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report looked at nursing homes in the Chicago area and found that two-thirds of 22 potential COVID breakthrough infections were asymptomatic.
“If we can also get everyone vaccinated outside the facilities, we can see the same high-quality results, but we can see a lack of transmission, we can see that very few people are reinfected,” Teng said.
Dr. Hauser said her case is being checked for variants.
“We were able to control my antibody levels against the vaccine and I had a great antibody response to the vaccine, which was great and they are now sequencing my virus,” Hauser said.
Despite her case, she still has faith in the vaccines.
“I do tell people you still need to get vaccinated because we really all need to get that herd immunity to get this under control a little bit more so we can get back to normal,” she said.