In Wisconsin, 95% of COVID-19 deaths since March were among unvaccinated


(MILWAUKEE) — In Wisconsin, 95% of COVID-19 deaths since March were among locals who were unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated, state health officials said.

The state recorded 21 COVID-19 deaths that were “breakthrough cases,” meaning patients who caught coronavirus 14 days or more after completing the vaccine series, out of 433 total deaths from March 1 to June 24. Such cases accounted for just 5% of deaths in that time frame, Wisconsin’s Department of Health shared with ABC News.

Data shows the chance of catching COVID-19 after getting vaccinated is very low.

Wisconsin reported 1,572 confirmed and probable “breakthrough cases,” which amounted to 1% of total COVID-19 cases from Jan. 1 through June 24. The number of “breakthrough cases” is also a small fraction of the more than 2.9 million fully vaccinated people in the state.

“As you know, the science is clear; vaccines work in the real world. They save lives. And if you are fully vaccinated, you are protected. All three vaccines have been tested and proven to be safe and effective,” Wisconsin Department of Health Services spokesperson Elizabeth Goodsitt told ABC News. “The vaccine not only works to fight off disease, but it reduces the risks for hospitalizations and deaths, and symptoms tend to be milder if someone does get sick after receiving the vaccine than if they didn’t get one at all.”

Doctors in Wisconsin say the state’s data matches what they’re seeing unfolding in hospitals.

“The vast majority of people who we are seeing in our hospitals, and who are dying of COVID-related complications are unvaccinated, unfortunately,” Dr. Joyce Sanchez of Froedtert Hospital and the Medical College of Wisconsin told local ABC affiliate WISN.

As of Wednesday, half of Wisconsinites have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 46.9% have completed the vaccine series, according to state data.

The state’s latest data reports a seven-day average of 73 new confirmed COVID-19 cases a day and a seven-day average test positivity rate of 0.9%.

Overall in the pandemic, Wisconsin has recorded more than 612,700 cases and over 7,000 confirmed deaths and more than 800 probable deaths.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.