The number of recorded COVID-19 cases among Americans who have been fully vaccinated against the virus that causes it is now over 7,100, according to health officials.
The so-called breakthrough cases are reported by states to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which then releases the figures.
In its new update, the CDC reported that 7,157 people who were fully vaccinated against the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, which causes COVID-19, still got the virus.
Most of the breakthrough cases, 64 percent, took place among women, while 46 percent were among men or women aged 60 years old or older.
Nearly 500 people who contracted COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated required hospital care, though about a third of their illnesses were deemed unrelated to COVID-19. Eighty-eight, or 1 percent of the breakthrough patients, died. Eleven of the deaths were reported as not showing symptoms or not related to the disease.
The state-by-state breakdown of the cases is not made public.
The CDC first reported the breakthrough case numbers on April 15. The new update shows 1,343 such cases. The new figures are through April 20. The CDC expects to update the numbers every Friday, a spokeswoman told The Epoch Times via email.
Because the current system relies on voluntary reporting from state health departments, there may be more breakthrough cases than the number the CDC publishes.
As of April 23, over 91 million Americans are fully vaccinated against the CCP virus.
Fully vaccinated refers to a person who received their second Moderna or Pfizer dose, or their single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, two or more weeks prior.
None of the vaccines provide full protection, so health officials and experts say the breakthrough cases are not a cause for concern.
“While there are breakthrough cases and they are not surprising, they are exceedingly rare and in no way undermine the value of mass vaccination. Moreover, the breakthrough cases are uniformly less severe, showing the benefits of even imperfect immunity,” S. Mark Tompkins, professor of infectious disease at the University of Georgia, told The Epoch Times in an email.
The CDC expects thousands of breakthrough cases to occur, a spokeswoman said. “Vaccine breakthrough infections make up a small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated. CDC recommends that all eligible people get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as one is available to them. CDC also continues to recommend people who have been fully vaccinated should keep taking precautions in public places, like wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet apart from others, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, and washing their hands often,” she added.
The CDC has said it is monitoring reported breakthrough cases for clustering by demographics, geographic location, time since vaccination, vaccine type, and virus lineage. It plans to soon focus on investigating only the breakthrough cases that result in hospitalization or death.