As the Delta variant of the coronavirus becomes more widespread, we are hearing of more "breakthrough" cases of COVID-19 in our community. The CDC defines breakthrough cases as fully vaccinated people with a positive diagnosis of COVID-19. Overall, we are seeing an increase in cases primarily in people who are not vaccinated.
Breakthrough cases in those that are fully vaccinated are less common and most of the cases are mild or show no symptoms at all. The CDC further reports that there is some evidence that vaccination may make illness less severe for those who are vaccinated and still get sick. Learn more about this breakthrough COVID.
"A lot of the cases we are picking up are actually in people with no symptoms, who are getting tested for things like travel or going to a camp or that kind of a scenario," said Manish Naik, M.D., Chief Medical Officer and Chief Medical Information Officer at Austin Regional Clinic. "And others are having mild or cold-like symptoms. There are occasional cases where people get sicker, even if they've been fully vaccinated. But those are unusual and much less common."
Naik said people with COVID-19-like symptoms should get tested so they don't spread the virus to others, especially those who are not vaccinated or to people with a suppressed immune system.
Why some people are more susceptible to breakthrough cases
"I think a lot of factors play into whether someone gets a breakthrough infection," said Naik. "For anyone to have a higher susceptibility for COVID, we know it's related to your age and your underlying health conditions and how well your immune system is working."
He said any condition or medication that suppresses your immune system's function can impact your ability to contract the coronavirus.
Dr. Naik's message to everyone is this: get the vaccine and get tested if you have symptoms, vaccinated or not.
ARC offers both vaccine appointments and drive-up testing appointments.
If you have not gotten your vaccine yet, schedule a COVID vaccine today.
If you feel sick, schedule a COVID test today.