Unvaccinated Americans were 4.5 times more likely than vaccinated individuals to become infected with the coronavirus, and they were 10 times more likely to be hospitalized and 11 times more likely to die from it, according to one among a handful of studies highlighting the effectiveness of the shots.
The study looked at more than 600,000 virus cases in 13 states, representing about one quarter of the U.S. population, between April and July, and concluded that individuals who were not fully vaccinated were far more susceptible to infection and death from the virus.
A day after President Biden issued broad vaccine mandates, aimed at propelling American workers to get vaccinated, federal health officials released the three studies that drew data from different U.S. regions to evaluate the protective power of the vaccines.
Vaccine protection against hospitalization and death remained strong even when the Delta variant was the dominant form of infection. But the vaccines’ effectiveness in preventing infection dropped from 91 percent to 78 percent, the study found.
The studies underscore a series of similar findings in recent weeks.
“As we have shown, study after study, vaccination works,” said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at a White House Covid briefing on Friday.
Here are some other top stories from the week:
A state judge in Washington granted an injunction on Wednesday prohibiting disruptive protests near school campuses after anti-mask demonstrations in a high school in the Washington city of Vancouver resulted in a lockdown. The injunction is effective as long as state-issued mask mandates are in place.
Los Angeles is the first major school district in the United States to mandate coronavirus vaccines for students 12 and older who are attending class in person. Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York said the city, which is home to the nation’s biggest school district, would not follow Los Angeles’s lead on the student vaccine mandate.
Sweden is barring all nonessential visitors from the United States. The Netherlands says vaccinated travelers must isolate after arriving from the U.S. — and unvaccinated ones are not welcome. These restrictions come after the European Union removed the U.S. from a list of safe countries whose residents can travel without coronavirus testing or quarantining.
Unemployment benefits that have kept millions of Americans afloat during the pandemic expired on Monday, setting up the abrupt cutoff of assistance to 7.5 million people as the Delta variant rattles the pandemic recovery. The Biden administration is in a political fight over the benefits and are now banking on other federal help and an autumn pickup in hiring to keep vulnerable families from foreclosures and food lines.
More than 40 million cases of the coronavirus have been recorded in the United States, according to a New York Times database. The total number of known infections — larger than the population of California, the nation’s most populous state — is a testament to the spread of the coronavirus, especially lately with the highly contagious Delta variant, and the United States’ patchwork efforts to rein it in.