Unvaccinated Ohioans represent 99.5 percent of Ohio’s COVID-19 deaths this year

Ohio Department of Health data show COVID-19-related deaths are overwhelmingly occurring among...
Ohio Department of Health data show COVID-19-related deaths are overwhelmingly occurring among unvaccinated Ohioans.
Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 9:21 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - COVID-19 continues to cause serious health outcomes for Ohioans, but it’s overwhelmingly among the unvaccinated, according to data from the Ohio Department of Health.

From Jan. 1-July 21, some 6,846 Ohioans died from causes related to COVID-19. Of those, 6,812 deaths—99.5 percent—were among those who were not fully vaccinated.

Hospital admissions over the same timespan tell a similar story.

Some 17,129 Ohioans were hospitalized with COVID-19 since Jan. 1. Of those, 16,924 hospitalizations—98.8 percent—were among those who were not fully vaccinated.

Currently, 45.78 percent of Ohioans are fully vaccinated.

The data appear to show the vaccines are more effective than their top-line efficacy rates, which do not account for disease severity.

That is, so-called “breakthrough infections” might occur among fully vaccinated persons, but those infections rarely lead to serious health outcomes or require hospitalization.

Even more rarely do they lead to death.

The data also appear to prove out the words of President Joe Biden that the current surge in cases, due almost entirely to the delta variant, is a “pandemic of the unvaccinated.”

Health officials say the vaccines are effective against the delta variant, which is much more transmissible than the original virus and somewhat more prone to infect already infected people.

That increased transmissibility has the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health agencies offering up new mask recommendations. It also has health officials pleading with the public to get vaccinated.

ODH Chief Medical Officer Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff spoke on the issue last week.

“All three of the vaccines offer very high rates of protection against delta hospitalization and death,” Vanderhoff said. “While, yes, there are potential side effects from vaccination – just like there are from any antibiotic or any medication – those risks are small, indeed, compared with the risks of COVID-19 with people of any age.”

In Kentucky, the ratio of new cases among unvaccinated people compared to vaccinated people is 8:1, reflecting that the vaccines give folks eight-fold protection against contracting the virus.

“We would beat the delta variant almost immediately if everyone got vaccinated,” Gov. Andy Beshear said on Monday.

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