CDC: Risk of Symptomatic Reinfection for Vaccinated People Is One in 4,628


The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is seen in an illustration released by the CDC in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. January 29, 2020. (Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM/CDC/Handout via Reuters)

From this morning’s Washington Post story about the internal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention slide presentation that has a lot of people freaked out: “Another estimates that there are 35,000 symptomatic infections per week among 162 million vaccinated Americans.”

That comes out to 1 out of every 4,628.57 people. I like those odds!

I’m sure someone would say “yes, but that’s per week, meaning you face the same risk the next week!” Okay, so every week, I face a new metaphorical lottery of being that one person out of 4,628 or so who has a symptomatic breakthrough infection. I can live with that, and you can, too. Yes, it will stink to feel sick for a couple of days, but symptomatic breakthrough infection almost never results in hospitalization or death.

People accept that much higher level of risk all the time. The chances of dying in a car crash are roughly one in 107, and the average person is involved in three motor vehicle accidents in their lifetime. If someone told you they refused to ever get into a motor vehicle because the odds of dying in an accident were too high, you would urge them to get counseling for runaway anxiety.

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