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Nearly 30 fully vaccinated Louisiana residents have died with COVID-19

WDSU New Orleans logo WDSU New Orleans 7/8/2021
coronavirus © Provided by WDSU New Orleans coronavirus

Nearly 30 people in Louisiana who received full doses of COVID-19 vaccinations have died with the coronavirus, according to the Louisiana Department of Health. It said the deaths were caused by the virus, not a reaction to the vaccine, which provides 94 to 95% protection against coronavirus.

Dr. Joseph Kanter, who is Louisiana Department of Health's state health officer and medical director, said 27 people in the state died with coronavirus more than two weeks after they were fully vaccinated. Kanter said the deaths were among people ages 28 to 93 years old.

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"These are people who died from COVID, from complications of COVID, despite being vaccinated because the vaccine is not 100 percent and people with weakened immune systems, people who are a little bit older and some people for reasons we don't really understand might not mount a full immune response to the vaccine."

Among unvaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals, the death rate is exponentially higher, with a total of 10,765 coronavirus deaths reported in Louisiana as of Wednesday.

According to the Louisiana Department of Health, there are a total of 1,563 breakthrough cases, also known as cases of COVID-19 in people who are fully vaccinated.


Video: Nearly 30 fully vaccinated Louisiana residents have died with COVID-19 (WDSU New Orleans)

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This is .1% of fully vaccinated people in Louisiana.

As of Wednesday, there are 94 people statewide in the hospital with COVID-like symptoms, which is .0006% of those fully vaccinated in the state.

Kanter said breakthrough cases are rare, but as infections increase, breakthrough cases are expected to go up.

"Right now, after three months of flat, quiet in Louisiana, we are unfortunately seeing our numbers go up," Kanter said. "The risk of having a breakthrough infection if you are fully vaccinated is very, very rare, but that rare risk goes up if COVID goes up."

It is not clear if the Delta variant is feeding sudden increases in coronavirus infections in Louisiana, where the strain has been detected, or contributing to breakthrough cases. Delta is now the dominant strain in the United States and in our region of the country, but the highly contagious disease is not well tracked in Louisiana because of limited testing capabilities.

"We are working to expand genetic sequencing capacity to have a broader view of how much the Delta variant is a factor in infections,” LDH said in a statement. “COVID vaccines are the best protection we have against COVID and the variants we are currently tracking, including the Delta variant."

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