The 500 counties where 62 to 95 percent of the population has been vaccinated detected more than 75 cases per 100,000 residents on average in the past week. Meanwhile, the 500 counties where 11 to 40 percent of the population has been vaccinated averaged about 58 cases per 100,000 residents.
The data is skewed by the fact that the CDC suppresses figures for counties with very low numbers of detected cases (one to nine) for privacy purposes. The Epoch Times calculated the average case rates by assuming the counties with the suppressed numbers had five cases each on average.
The least vaccinated counties tended to be much smaller, averaging less than 20,000 in population. The most vaccinated counties had an average population of over 330,000. More populous counties, however, weren’t more likely to have higher case rates.
Even when comparing counties of similar population, the ones with the most vaccinations tended to have higher case rates than those that reported the least vaccinations.
Among counties with populations of 1 million or more, the 10 most vaccinated had a case rate more than 27 percent higher than the 10 least vaccinated. In counties with populations of 500,000 to 1 million, the 10 most vaccinated had a case rate almost 19 percent higher than the 10 least vaccinated.
In counties with populations of 200,000 to 500,000, the 10 most vaccinated had case rates around 55 percent higher than the 10 least vaccinated.
The difference was more than 200 percent for counties with populations of 100,000 to 200,000.
For counties with smaller populations, the comparison becomes increasingly difficult because so much of the data is suppressed.
Another problem is that the prevalence of testing for COVID-19 infections isn’t uniform. A county may have a low case number on paper because its residents are tested less often.
The most recent wave of COVID-19 has been attributed to the Omicron virus variant, which is more transmissible but less virulent. The variant also seems more capable of overcoming any protection offered by the vaccines, though, according to the CDC, the vaccines still reduce the risk of severe disease.