Vaccines linked to preventing over a quarter-million COVID-19 cases, 39,000 deaths among seniors: HHS study


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Decrease in cumulative weekly deaths in 48 nationally sampled states

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COVID-19 vaccination may have helped prevent more than a quarter million coronavirus cases and tens of thousands of deaths among seniors, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced Tuesday, a new agency report showed. can.

In a release detailing the report’s findings, HHS said that the study – carried out by researchers from HHS’s Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) – found that immunizations were associated with approximately 265,000 COVID-19 infections, 107,000 hospitalizations was associated with recruitment and reduction. 39,000 of the nearly 63 million Medicare beneficiaries died between January and May 2021.


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“This report confirms what we hear regularly from states: COVID-19 vaccines save lives, prevent hospitalizations and reduce infections,” said HHS Secretary Javier Becerra said in a statement.

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The researchers used a combination of individual-level medical fee-of-service (FFS) claims and data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on county-level vaccination rates. Compare rates of results What their model predicted would have happened without any vaccinations.

“Comparing the rates of these outcomes to those predicted by our model without any vaccination, we estimate that COVID-19 vaccination will result in approximately 107,000 infections, 43,000 hospitalizations and 25.3 million beneficiaries in our study. were associated with an estimated reduction of 16,000 deaths in the sample,” the study authors said. “These estimates are in line with an estimated reduction of approximately 265,000 infections, 107,000 hospitalizations, and 39,000 deaths for the full Medicare population of 62.7 million people.”

Forty-eight states — excluding Texas and Hawaii, which did not provide county-level estimates of immunization in the CDC data — were included in the sample and the report noted that those 65 and older were among the lowest and highest. The difference in vaccination rates through the end of May highlights the continued opportunity for counties and states to “take advantage of COVID-19 vaccination to prevent COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths.”

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“Today’s report reflects the devastating impact of COVID-19 on our vulnerable seniors and demonstrates that efforts to prioritize and vaccinate this group are directly related to saving lives,” HHS wrote. “More than 352,000 people lost their lives during the first nine months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the availability of vaccines, nearly 80% of these deaths were in people 65 and older who were also eligible for Medicare. “

HHS noted that all racial and ethnic groups and all 48 states experienced a reduction in the number of COVID-19 deaths, hospitalizations and infections linked to an increase in vaccination rates, American Indian and Alaska Native Medicare beneficiaries who reported SARS- The largest reduction in CoV was observed in the vaccination-related percentage. -2 Infections, hospitalizations and deaths.

The study found that the vaccines were associated with a reduction in nearly 5,600 deaths among nursing home Medicare beneficiaries.

“For the period January to May 2021, when vaccination increased from 1% to 47% among adults 18 to 64 and from 1% to 80% among seniors, there was an 11-12% reduction in weekly COVID-19 hospitalizations in the study. and deaths among Medicare beneficiaries for every 10% increase in county vaccination rates,” HHS said.

The agency wrote that the report found that a higher vaccination rate for all adults was even more protective of Medicare beneficiaries, not just a higher elderly vaccination rate.

HHS said these findings further underscore the importance of vaccination for all eligible individuals in the US.

According to CDC dataMore than 185 million Americans are now fully vaccinated.

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