The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) said that 168 vaccinated individuals in about two dozen Oregon counties received a positive test for the virus at least 14 days after receiving their final dose of the vaccine.
“It’s a reminder that while the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccines are all highly effective at preventing severe COVID-19 illness and death, no vaccine is 100 percent effective, and vaccine breakthrough cases will occur,” the OHA stated on April 9.
A so-called vaccine breakthrough is a case in which an individual receives a positive CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus test result at least two weeks after receiving the vaccine. Oregon health officials said that such cases “remain uncommon.”
“The number of vaccine breakthrough cases identified in Oregon (168) represents a very small proportion of the more than 700,000 people in Oregon who have now been fully vaccinated against COVID-19,” the agency stated. “OHA also noted that vaccine breakthrough cases can be prevented through our trusted safety measures, such as masking, physical distancing and avoiding social gatherings.”
The agency didn’t disclose the specific number of “vaccine breakthrough” instances among people who received the respective Moderna, Pfizer, or J&J shots. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two shots, while the J&J vaccine requires just one.
“State and local epidemiologists are continuing to track and investigate vaccine breakthrough cases and are working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to collect information that may provide insight into characteristics associated with vaccine breakthrough,” the health authority said in its statement.
None of the cases were associated with a COVID-19 variant such as the UK or South African variants, officials said.
A study from Tel Aviv University found that a South African variant of the CCP virus affects people vaccinated with the Pfizer shot more than unvaccinated people.
The study found that the variant is eight times more prevalent in individuals who were vaccinated—or 5.4 percent against 0.7 percent—than those who weren’t vaccinated. Clalit Health Services, a top Israeli health care provider, also helped in the study.
“We found a disproportionately higher rate of the South African variant among people vaccinated with a second dose, compared to the unvaccinated group,” said Adi Stern of Tel Aviv University, according to reports. “This means that the South African variant is able, to some extent, to break through the vaccine’s protection.”
The study looked at 400 people who had received at least one shot of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and had contracted the COVID-19 variant, and compared them to the same number of people who were infected and unvaccinated. Moderna’s vaccine is also used in Israel, but it wasn’t included in the study.