Skip to main content

What Does Covid-19 Breakthrough Data Suggest About Waning Immunity?

Vaccinated or not risks are much higher for those over the age of 65.
  • Author:
  • Publish date:
Breakthrough Case Outcomes

Breakthrough Hospitalizations Concentrated Among Most Vulnerable

The WSJ reports Breakthrough Hospitalizations Concentrated Among Most Vulnerable. [Note: that is a copy-free link for those who wish to read the full article].

State and federal data broadly show unvaccinated people are primarily driving pandemic numbers. Breakthrough infections, however, are making up a growing portion because of rising numbers of vaccinated people and waning immunity among people who got their shots early on, some states show.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said Wednesday that emergency room visits by vaccinated people age 65 and older were increasing. At the Medical University of South Carolina, nearly all fully vaccinated Covid-19 patients in the ICU have weak immune systems from prior health problems, said Andrew Goodwin, the section chief of critical care. 

The likelihood of having a breakthrough infection was still low, though confirmed infections were more common for people with these illnesses. [diabetes, chronic lung disease and chronic kidney disease]

The Epic Health Research Network’s cumulative data show about 1.2% of fully vaccinated people had a breakthrough case, similar to findings among states that publicize such data. The company also found a tipping point for breakthrough cases at about 20 to 22 weeks after people got their latest shot. Georgia found something similar while measuring the gap between when people became fully vaccinated and tested positive for Covid-19.

State officials have stressed that unvaccinated people remain at higher risk. In Vermont, which leads the states with 72% of its population fully vaccinated, unvaccinated people have recently made up roughly 70% of new cases, Health Commissioner Mark Levine said in an interview this month.

Authorities are concerned that vaccinated people are making up a bigger piece of the pie, however, and are urging boosters. On Thursday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear noted that 16% of hospitalizations in that less-vaccinated state have been among fully vaccinated people since March 1. Last month the cumulative figure was 8.4%.

Look at how these numbers have changed,” he said. “This is waning immunity.”

Key Takeaways

It's easy to twist those numbers into whatever you believe. But the Vermont and Kentucky provide the key takeaways. 

  1. In Vermont, unvaccinated people constitute 28% of the population but 70% of the new cases.
  2. The risks of being unvaccinated soar the with age and health risks. The article did not mention weight, but undoubtedly that is a factor.
  3. Immunity from shots wears off.

Point three will bring massive amounts of "I told you so hoots" from the antivaxxers. 

Yet, a quick check shows Kentucky is 51.61% Vaccinated as of November 18. That means 86% of the Covid hospitalizations in the state come from the roughly 48% of the population that is not fully vaccinated.

The sane thing to do, is to get vaccinated. Then if you have any risks, age, health concerns, overweight, etc., the sane thing to do is get a booster. 

Scroll to Continue


I got my booster last week. I am 68, not overweight, with no known health issues. 


My views regarding sane things aside, I strongly disagree with Biden's attempt to force vaccinations by OSHA mandate.

I believed from the outset Biden's mandate was unconstitutional.  An appeals court just ruled that way.

For discussion please see Appeals Court Blocks Biden's Vaccine Mandate in a Blistering Rebuke

Thanks for Tuning In!

Like these reports? If so, please Subscribe to MishTalk Email Alerts.

Subscribers get an email alert of each post as they happen.

Read the ones you like and you can unsubscribe at any time.

If you have subscribed and do not get email alerts, please check your spam folder.